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Heart Attack Averted! Thankfully My GPU Is Not Dying!

I was panicking for a moment, but, it's not dead

With GPU’s being very costly in 2021 due to a massive shortage of silicon due to COVID—19 and other factors, when both my screens started turning black and powering off before recovering and coming back on, only to do it again every few minutes, I’m starting to panic, as this is my work rig, how I make a living.

So, I started troubleshooting, I started by removing my Asus ROG Strix RX580, cleaning it off, specifically, making sure the PCI-E contacts are clean, before reinstalling. This did not fix the issue; as within a few minutes of booting the system, it was power cycling my monitors, which are incidentally connected by two different connection methods, my main monitor is connected by DP, the second connected via DVI-D.

The next step was uninstalling the AMD Radeon drivers using DDU (Display Driver Uninstaller) in safe mode, which is a pain in the ass to get into from Windows 10. I could not get the Shift-click restart from the shutdown menu, which was Google’s first suggestion, to work, so I had to try Google again, and found I could do it from Settings > Recovery > Advanced Startup, why did Microsoft remove F8 safe mode boot?

But, I digress, it seemingly did not fix the issue, even without anything other than the basic windows driver, it still power cycled my monitors. But, after a couple more monitor power cycles, Windows popped up a message which said something about changes have been made to my system and that I needed to restart. I guess it must have been installing an AMD driver from Microsoft, causing the screen cycling.

After the reboot, I used the AMD Auto Detect software to find the best driver for my devices, it downloaded the 21.3.1 driver (dated 3/10/2021), and also some other drivers for my Ryzen 1800X CPU; and after some more monitor power cycles, and computer reboots, everything looks to be good again, so it looks like there was some sort of driver corruption during the last PC shut down as it was absolutely fine before that. To be clear, I had not updated my GPU driver for several weeks, so it wasn’t a bad update.

Finally; this is not related to my issue, but the AMD Upgrade Advisor makes me laugh; despite the hardware I have, it assumes I want to upgrade to an RX 6900 XT, and an AMD Ryzen 9 5950X, which of course is their top of the range products. Not to mention unobtainable for MSRP, the RX 6900 XT was selling on Amazon for $2,200+, which is more than double the MSRP. You see why I was starting to panic, I don’t have double MSRP money to buy a new GPU when my current card performs fine for my needs.

While searching for an image of my current Asus ROG Strix RX580 GPU for my featured image for this blog, I noticed that some people are trying to flog it used on eBay for $700, I bought it brand new in 2017 for $274.99. I really hope that people are not paying 2.5 times the MSRP for a four-year-old GPU!


4 Days, 2 Computer Builds

TUF Gaming B450-Plus II, MAD Ryzen 3600X, Vengeance LPX

This week, I have built two PCs, one is an upgrade of motherboard, CPU, and RAM, the second being a computer built from the parts I upgraded from, and an SSD and case that I had knocking about.

Starting with my wife’s upgraded machine; back in 2016; I built her a machine for real estate work, but over the past couple of years, my wife has been getting into photography; and the Intel G4400 with 8GB of RAM system was not cutting it; being a dual-core processor without hyperthreading. So, I used my new Amazon store card, to buy my wife an AMD Ryzen 3600X CPU, Asus TUF Gaming B450-PLUS II motherboard, and 16 GB 3600mhz Corsair Vengeance RAM, which is a rather large boost in performance.

Out of interest, I ran Cinebench R23; and I was surprised by the performance of the 3rd generation Ryzen 5. Despite having two fewer cores than my 1st generation Ryzen 7, it outperformed my top-spec 1st gen Ryzen 7 significantly.  The 3rd gen Ryzen 5 in my wife’s upgraded computer scored 1,165 more points than my Ryzen 7 1800X, a 13% uplift. I understand why; my wife has a 600Mhz speed boost on the RAM, 3,600Mhz vs 3,000Mhz; and despite having two fewer cores, the 3600X boost clock is higher and it is an all-core boost to 4.4Ghz, where their first generation Ryzen chips only boost on a single core to 4Ghz.

Suffice to say that my wife is very happy with the new motherboard, CPU, and RAM combo.

After the upgrade of my wife’s computer, I found myself with motherboard, CPU, and RAM without a purpose; and I’m all about repurposing hardware rather than putting it away in the closet, collecting dust. I did it when I replaced my PC in 2017, upgrading from an AMD FX 8350 based system to the aforementioned Ryzen 7 1800X, using my former FX-based system as a PLEX media and file storage server.

I had a spare case, SSD, and power supply in my closet; so I thought that I’d make good use of this complete set of components; but sadly, the 350w power supply, which came out of an Asus pre-built, was not up to the job of powering the Gigabyte H110M-A, Intel Pentium G4400 combo, it would power on for 1/2 second, before powering off again. Rather than letting perfectly good components sit unused, I purchased a cheap, but reliable power supply, a Corsair CX550M 550 Watt unit for $65, and now I have a fully functional media center PC in my living room, even if the Ultra XBlaster Mid-Tower V2 case is very dated, from a time where cable management wasn’t important, it literally has zero cable management.

Seeing the performance of a mid-range chip like the Ryzen 3600X, compared to the first generation flagship chip, has me thinking maybe it’s time for an upgrade for myself. One option would be a simple swap of the Ryzen 1800X to the Ryzen 3950X, 8 core to a 16 core chip on the same motherboard, as I spent the extra for the Asus ROG Crosshair VI Hero X370 board, meaning Zen 2 (Ryzen 3000) chips work with a firmware update. Or, as my system still meets my needs, I might look into a whole new platform change, with whatever comes from AMD after the 5000 series, which will probably arrive in 2022.


Is Craigslist just for scammers and spammers in 2021?

Craigslist 2021, Is Craigslist just for scammers and spammers in 2021?

As a rental property marketer; I have worked with Craigslist for a long, long time, more than 8 years at this point; and from a marketers perspective, 2021 marks a new low point in working with Craigslist.

In recent months, I have seen my legitimate listings for apartments and houses being deleted en masse; for example, I logged in this morning to find that 70% of my listings had been deleted. At least in the past; Craigslist ghosted my posts; i.e. showing it as live to me, but not showing it to anyone else, now they just delete my post, sometimes within minutes of me clicking post, making me feel like I’m wasting my time.

Over the past two years, I have noticed a lot more spam, people posting the same advert a dozen or more times, which does breach the Craigslist TOS, yet, those posts don’t seem to get deleted. I have also had issues with scammers taking my copy, my photos, and changing a few details like Email addresses and phone numbers, and reposting my property to Craigslist, usually at a much reduced rental rate. I have flagged and had my colleagues flag these fraudulent listings, and Craigslist seemingly ignores the flags.

To be clear, I try to follow the terms of service; I post one advert per rental unit in the correct Craigslist area. Sometimes I post in two Craigslist areas for cities like McPherson, which is halfway between Wichita and Salina, so I post to both Wichita and Salina Craigslist areas, other than that, I follow the Craigslist TOS. I’m not interested in spamming dozens of adverts for a single unit or cheating the system.

I do use a template system, which I developed myself, using a bullet point type of listing, with sections for contact, apartment features, community features, pricing, and finally company information, which creates very similar looking posts, but each is unique information wise. All the deleted posts were using this template, so I am guessing this is the reason why the Craigslist AI went on a cull of my postings.

At this point, I’m questioning whether Craigslist is worth the time and effort? Craigslist does not seem to be the big lead generator these days. Zillow, Hotpads, Zumper, Costar (Apartments.com) seems to be the big lead generators in recent years; and I have to put in much less work on those platforms. Time is money; which means Craigslist offers poor ROI in terms of time, spending 1/4 of my day messing with it.

Fortunately, I live and market in an area where fraudulent listings are not a massive problem, like bigger cities. I find one of my listings fraudulently listed maybe 4 – 5 times a year. However, I am very frustrated with the current state of Craigslist, after spending the past 10 hours recreating my listings on Craigslist after seeing 70% of my adverts highlighted in pink, i.e. deleted when I logged in this morning.

/end rant


Simple Domain Host: Marketing Mailers Disguised As An Invoice

Simple Domain Host - Misleading Solicitation

Recently, what seemed to be an invoice arrived at one of our business locations. Upon further inspection, it was an attempt to mislead unsuspecting managers into switching hosting for the business website to Simple Domain Host, at the bargain price of $180 per year, using scary words to make you think your domain name and/or website is suddenly going to disappear if you don’t switch to Simple Domain Host.

You know it’s bad when you search for “Simple Domain Host” on Google and the first two organic results are the Better Business Bureau website. Which, if you click through to the BBB web page for Simple Domain Host, you will find many complaints about what I am about to write about.

Here’s the text from the body of the solicitation from Simple Domain Host.

Please make checks payable to: Simple Domain Host

To pay with a credit card or to avdid receiving paper invoices in the future, please sign up for paperless billing at: www.simpledomainhost.com

Hosting your website with us will ensure your website remains active, that you retain exclusive rights to it on the Web,and now is the time to transfer your web hosting from your current provider to Simple Domain Host. Failure to renew your web hosting by the expiration date may result in website outages and a loss of your online identity making it difficult for your customers to reach you on the Web.

Privatization of web hosting and renewals allows the customer the choice of web hosting providers when initially establishing a website and also when renewing web hosting. Web hosting customers are not obligated to renew their web hosting with their current provider or with Simple Domain Host. We would like you to renew your web hosting with Simple Domain Host. There are no contracts and you are under no obligation to pay the amounts stated herewithin. THIS IS A SOLICITATION FOR THE ORDER OF GOODS OR SERVICES, OR BOTH, AND NOT A BILL, INVOICE, OR STATEMENT OF ACCOUNT DUE. You are under no obligation to make any payments on account of this offer unless you accept this offer. This notice is not a bill, it is rather an easy means of payment should you decide to renew your web hosting with Simple Domain Host.

Simple Domain Host uses scary words on their marketing mailer like ensure your website remains active, and that you retain exclusive rights to it on the Web, trying to scare owners and managers of businesses into writing a check or inputting their credit card details, switching their perfectly fine hosting to Simple Domain Host. Also, the use of the terms renew, and renewing is designed to mislead, there is no renewal going on, this is straight-up switching to a new provider.

In this case, the manager of the office where the Simple Domain Host solicitation was sent reached out to me, knowing I handled all hosting and domain name registrations for the company. I swiftly responded with DO NOT PAY, it’s a scam, explaining which companies we use and that they will never receive a bill for domain name registrations, transfers, or website hosting, as this is handled at a corporate level.

Responding to complaints on the Better Business Bureau website, Simple Domain Host repeatedly copy and pastes; and I quote “We sincerely apologize if there was any confusion regarding the solicitation you received. We utilize third-party copywriters, marketing agencies, and direct mail designers for all of our direct mail pieces, and all marketing materials are thoroughly validated by our legal team to ensure compliance with all applicable rules and regulations.”

Let’s be clear, I’m sure their legal team OK’ed these solicitations, they covered their own arses with the statement, THIS IS A SOLICITATION FOR THE ORDER OF GOODS OR SERVICES, OR BOTH, AND NOT A BILL, INVOICE, OR STATEMENT OF ACCOUNT DUE. This single line of text excuses everything else in terms of legality. You’d think our elected officials would make this sort of intentionally misleading solicitation illegal, but they don’t represent us, so companies will use this loophole.

As always, when I write these blogs, I hope that people will find it and not give a dime to these companies using such misleading marketing practices. If you find it useful, please share it to spread the message.

Finally, I’ll leave you with the full scan of the mailer; sans contact details.

Simple Domain Host Fake Invoice


Biden Bucks: How I will Spend Mine!

Biden Bucks, March 2021

Yesterday, I noticed that the March 2021 stimulus payment, AKA #BidenBucks was pending in our bank account, and will be available on March 17, 2021. It took its sweet time getting here, the last round of pandemic relief stimulus checks was in December 2020, thanks to the snail pace of congress getting anything done, in the meantime people still have to pay rent, bills, car payments, buy food, etc.

Don’t get me wrong, we are not as desperate as some; I have remained gainfully employed; however, my wife has been out of work for three months, meaning we are down about $1,100 per month, which is significant, with no unemployment payments forthcoming. We have been smart with our last stimulus check and tax refund, sipping from those funds to make up the shortfall that my income does not cover.

That said, without the March 2021 round of stimulus checks, within 6 to 8 weeks, we would have been in financial trouble, my income alone is not enough to cover all the bills, debt payments, and groceries. The majority of our debts are due to unexpected expenses, such as car repairs, medical bills, and grocery purchases, as you know, we need to eat, we absolutely do not frivolously spend on things we want.

Our debt payments alone account for 27.2% of our total net income, which includes child support payments for my stepson. Another 28.85% goes to rent to keep a roof over our head, that’s 56% of our income before paying monthly bills and buying groceries, So my plan is to pay off $4,400 of debt, saving us $412 per month, while keeping the remaining $1,100 to cover any shortfalls over the next few months.

There are things I would like to buy; for example, I would like to purchase a Sigma 12-24mm f/4 DG HSM Art Lens for my real estate photography. This is something I have been drooling over for 2 years, but it would be irresponsible to drop $1.6k on something that is a want, not a need to have. I have a real hard time justifying buying myself anything, when the going is good, let alone when times are fiscally tough.

I honestly cannot imagine how the really hard-up people feel, the families with several months of backdated rent due soon. The people that have no income, being screwed over by states, not being able to claim any unemployment benefits due to inadequate infrastructure, and constantly busy phone lines, if you can get through at all. The US has failed its citizens at a state and federal level during this pandemic. Biden has done better, but still a long way short of what is needed by everyday Americans, In the meantime, big business and the wealthy have made out like bandits during the COVID—19 pandemic.

Ending this blog on a political note; not a single Republican in the US House of Representatives or the US Senate voted for the stimulus checks, it passed with 50 democrat and independent senators votes +1 tie-breaking vote from Vice President Harris. Republicans represent the poorest states in the union, yet every one of Team Red voted NO, sticking a middle finger up to their constituents. I hope that the people of their states remember this in 18 months, and vote them out. I doubt it will happen, Americans, especially in red states seem to vote against their own best interests consistently, this is why Republicans (and Democrats on occasion, I’m looking at you, Joe Manchin and Kyrsten Sinema) in Washington DC vote to screw over the very people that put them in power in the first place, they don’t fear being voted out.


ER doctor – extreme Lupus (RA) pain is not an emergency!

ER doctor refuses future treatment for Lupus flare sufferer.

A little over a week ago, I praised Wesley Woodlawn ER for the way they took care of my wife’s frequent Lupus flares, brought on by Remicade infusions, which was supposed to help with her Lupus.

This week, I have the opposite to say, specifically about Dr. Brian L Debrot, who has put a note in Erin’s file instructing other doctors to not give my wife any more treatment for her Lupus. Dr. Debrot claims that my wife is using the emergency room for pain management. This accusation could not be further from the truth, we would rather not have to go to the ER at all, we would much rather have it controlled by Advanced Pain Medicine Associates, Erin’s pain management office, who are failing at the said task.

Advanced Pain Medicine claims they cannot treat Erin for Lupus, which is a type of Rheumatoid Arthritis, they are only treating her for her back pain, caused by a car wreck about nine years ago. Upon looking at the Advanced Pain website page where they list conditions they treat, Rheumatoid Arthritis is listed, which makes me wonder why they would have told my wife it’s not a condition they treat?

Advanced Pain Medicine list of conditions treated.

Back to Wesley Woodlawn, Dr. Debrot literally told my wife, she just has to live with the pain as it’s not considered an emergency, oh, and change her doctors. So, a doctor is going to refuse to treat a patient who is in extreme, debilitating pain, because he does not consider it an emergency? Something that the other doctors at the Wesley Woodlawn ER apparently disagree with, as they treat Erin without question.

Erin attempted to explain that the Remicade infusions caused her regular weekly visits to the ER, but Dr. Debrot dismissed this despite his colleagues at Wesley Woodlawn, suggesting that the Remicade is likely the reason for the increase in flares, vindicating what I had been saying for a while, continuing to say that Erin is likely to be in the ER regularly until the Remicade works its way out of her system.

We are fortunate to have good medical insurance, which covers almost 100% of our costs after the $500 max out of pocket has been satisfied, which happens within 4 – 6 weeks of a new year. We know some people who have no option but to go to an emergency room for treatment because they have sub-par medical insurance, with stupidly high out-of-pocket deductibles or no medical insurance at all.

To be clear, every other doctor at Wesley Woodlawn has been amazing, getting Erin in, treated, and discharged in 15 to 20 minutes, but this one doctor is being a real douchbag. I bet that if he had to suffer the sort of pain that Lupus sufferers have to deal with on a daily basis, he would be crying like a baby.

Something that Erin said deeply disturbs me, she said that if she thought there was no treatment, she would have committed suicide, which makes my anger at Dr. Debrot even more intense. Erin said this just before she got in my car on Tuesday morning to go to the ER where this experience transpired.

In an effort to not return to the ER, Erin started a new Orencia infusion treatment today at her RA doctor’ Nadia Gibson‘s office, which I just hope works as going to the ER is no longer an option without fighting with WesleyMC, which I am more than willing to do, I will fight like hell to help Erin not be in pain.


Kansas Department of Labor failing Kansans every day

Kansas Department of Labor Website - Server Error

My wife was made redundant in December 2020, her position was experimental, and due to the COVID—19 pandemic, she was unable to do her job effectively, so the company, understandably decided to cut their losses. And since that time, she has received one unemployment payment of $396 from the Kansas Department of Labor, which arrived on January 5, 2021; and nothing since.

My wife, Erin, is a part-time student, so has to declare her student status on form K-BEN 317, which she has done, repeatedly, and submitted via fax, email, and postal mail, and KDOL has claimed they have not received K-BEN 317 through any of these delivery methods. Even before this pandemic, this has been an issue, the question is; are KDOL incompetent or maliciously ‘losing’ the school attendance form?

Good luck calling KDOL, my wife did get through after 2+ hours on hold, only to be told that they had not received K-BEN 317, that is why she has not received any further unemployment benefits since January 5, 2021. The representative gave Erin a different email address to send the completed school attendance form to, and guess what, several more weeks have passed and nothing, no deposits from Kansas DOL.

In addition, KDOL “upgraded” its website to file claims online at the end of January; and it doesn’t work. At the beginning of February, claimants were required to sign up to the new website; and there was no signup link, the link did appear a few days later, and Erin successfully signed up, but upon getting in, she was greeted with a “server error” message; this error message has been persistent for weeks now.

I checked the mail before I concluded this blog and in the mailbox was a notice of determination letter from KDOL, saying that my wife is no longer eligible for unemployment benefits beginning 12/27/2020.

Kansas Department of Labor Unemployment Determination Letter

So, months after December 27, 2020, and sending the requested information, no less than four times, via three delivery methods, Erin has been denied for not supplying the requested information. In the meantime, bills are still coming in, and my income alone is not enough to cover all the bills and debt payments every month. And, there is still no stimulus payment from Washington DC; and no guarantee that it will even pass with Democratic Senators like Kyrsten Sinema and Joe Manchin, who blocked the removal of the filibuster, which would allow Democrats to pass legislation with a simple 51 vote majority.

And based on what I have read online, Erin is far from alone in finding it hard to get unemployment benefits. And Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly is being a politician making excuses and talking about the past. No-one cares what happened in the past, how outdated Kansas’ IT infrastructure is, how many staff have been hired to answer phones, or how many fraudulent claims have been stopped. IT’S NOT ENOUGH!


The Fibromyalgia/Lupus Patient, Remicade Infusions, and the ER!

The Fibromyalgia/Lupus Patient, Remicade Infusions, and the ER!

If you follow me on Twitter, you will probably be aware that my wife suffers from Fibromyalgia and Lupus, which frequently sends her to the emergency room, when the pain gets too unbearable. Our medical insurance company, Blue Cross, Blue Shield of Kansas, are pushing for us to go to an urgent care clinic; which we have done before, they take $75 of our money, only to tell us to go to the ER as they cannot help, so we cut out the middle man. Our local ER department, Wesley Woodlawn has been amazing, getting my wife’s pain under control and sent home quickly, thank you everyone at Wesley Woodlawn.

My wife, Erin was diagnosed with Fibromyalgia and Lupus a few years back, and she started Remicade infusions about 7 – 8 months ago in an effort to tame the frequent Lupus flares as my wife was visiting the ER every 6 – 8 weeks with extremely painful Lupus flares. After her first infusion, I noted that her visits to the ER had increased in frequency, to every 2 – 3 weeks. I pointed this out to Erin, and she dismissed my concerns; saying that it’s going to take time to work, at least 4 – 6 months. But with every Remicade infusion, she was visiting the emergency room more and more frequently, to the point where we are at the ER every 7 – 10 days. I’m no doctor, but I understand cause and effect, but what do I know?

Last night, we were at the Wesley Woodlawn ER again for Erin’s sixth big flare of 2021; and it’s only February 16. Her third visit since her last Remicade infusion, three weeks back, which had an immediate effect on her body, causing her joints to be inflamed instantly, which, in turn, triggered a Lupus flare, ending in a visit to the ER after her regular doctors could not help her with the pain.

Three ER visits ago, January 25, 2021, I was finally vindicated, when an ER doctor confirmed what I had been saying about Erin having a bad reaction to the Remicade treatments. The doctor told her to look into the half-life of Remicade in the body; saying that until the Remicade is out of her system, she is going to be visiting the ER frequently with flares. I take no pleasure in being right, but the vindication is nice.

Every day it breaks my heart to see my wife in pain, constantly, and I do mean constantly, just the intensity of pain varies. I feel so helpless, not being able to do anything to ease her pain, other than to drive her to the emergency room on a weekly basis. Erin’s RA doctor is going to try another infusion, I don’t know which one, I just hope that it works. I would like to be able to be a husband, instead of a caregiver. I spent my teenage years being a caregiver for my mother, it’s frustrating to have to do it again for my wife, especially as we are still relatively young, in our mid-40s. Erin is the love of my life, what else can I do?


Bad Medical Billing Practices

Bad Medical Billing Practices

Yesterday, while driving out to a property to take photos, I received a phone call from Midwest Service Bureau, a collection agency, calling about, no scratch that, demanding payment, of a bill from Dr. James Vincent of The Therapy Center, a bill that we thought had already been covered by secondary insurance.

As we had only received the letter about the debt being passed to Midwest Service Bureau on Friday, Feb 5, 2021, and the Therapy Center was closed when we called that afternoon. I explained the situation, that I need to talk to The Therapy Center before I make any sort of payment, and he wanted proof that insurance had paid, I told him I did not have proof, as I have to look into it, anyway, he notated that I refused to pay, and he hung up after I expressed my dislike for him and Midwest Service Bureau.

Going back to the beginning, our son, Conner had his second evaluation for Autism at The Therapy Center, receiving a bill for $393.73 about 5-6 weeks later, after our primary insurance had paid 40% of the bill. We did not pay the bill, instead, my wife provided The Therapy Center with secondary insurance from Conner’s biological father. Then, we would have paid the remainder if any after the secondary insurance had been billed. We never received another bill from The Therapy Center, so we assumed that the secondary insurance had covered the remainder of the bill, and we moved on with our lives.

That was until, Friday, February 5, 2021, when we received the collection letter from MSB.

My wife finally got hold of the billing department at The Therapy Center, we explained the situation to Kelly, and she could not find any trace of the secondary insurance we had provided to the front desk back in December during an appointment for our Daughter. Kelly took the insurance details again and said she would contact MSB and put a hold on the collection, while secondary insurance was being billed.

Getting to the title of this blog, the bad billing practice; a simple phone call to us could have resolved this issue. Sending out monthly billing statements would have given us a clue that something was amiss; heck, they could have even Emailed it if they did not want to print and mail out a statement, they have my Email address. Neither of these things happened, and now my wife is going to have a collections order on her credit report, even if they notate that it was there in error, it still dings her score, which is unacceptable.

I don’t mind paying bills or at least make a payment arrangement to break up larger bills, which are common in medical billing. What I do not like is businesses not doing their due diligence, and sending bills to collections without even making an attempt to talk to the people who owe them money. That creates a lot of bad will, and more than likely, that person will no longer patronize their business.

The reality is that most people who are in the unfortunate position of having to deal with collection agencies like Midwest Service Bureau don’t have the cash flow to pay $$$$ out of pocket. Companies should think about calling and talking to their customers, most people would be willing to work out a payment plan, to avoid being sent to collections, while also creating goodwill with your customer base.

Now, we wait, will we get any further correspondence from The Therapy Center regarding the insurance claim? will collections get resumed, without a single word to us? I hope not, but I won’t be holding my breath, based upon my experience. This incident has forever tarnished my view of The Therapy Center.


Amazon ‘Refund’ Email Scam

Today, I got an email, purporting to be from Amazon thanking me for purchasing a Canon EOS 5D DSLR Camera for the sum total of $3,429.30. Obviously, I did not purchase an EOS 5D, a camera that was released 16 years ago. Anyway, I have been around the online block many times, so I knew this was an obvious scam, I have ordered enough stuff from Amazon to know the Amazon confirmation Email format, and this Email was not it. Although, I did check my Amazon account, just to be safe, not that I needed to as I received the Email on my ‘webmaster’ address that I use to manage my employer’s domain registrations.

Amazon Email Scam, Canon EOS 5D

I’m assuming they got my name from the WHOIS on one of the domains that are registered under my name, that is the only place where my name is linked to my employer’s webmaster Email address. I am 100% sure that I did not create an Amazon account with a work Email address, and if I did, it would not have been the Email address this scam message was sent to, my main work Email is not published online.

Of course, me being me, I did not call the number, instead, I searched Google for 1-850-919-3353 and I found that this is a variation of a refund scam. This is why “In-case you require any change in order or like to cancel we recommend giving us call immediately” on the aforementioned number appears prominently near the top of the message, hoping that the recipient of this message will call and get talked into divulging personal and financial information, allowing remote access to their computer, or saying that you need to purchase gift cards to cancel the order, which should be an immediate red flag.

I hope I would not have to say this, but never call any numbers shown in the Email, instead, visit https://www.amazon.com/hz/contact-us/ (don’t click this, type it, manually), just because the text says amazon.com, that does not mean that the hyperlink attached to the text goes to amazon.com. You will need to log in to your Amazon account to access this page, like most online retailers, Amazon doesn’t make it easy to find a phone number, but on this page, you can initiate a text chat, or request a callback. Even if the sender appears to be amazon.com, don’t trust it, it’s not hard to spoof Email addresses.

I publish the phone number in the hope that anyone searching for this number will find this blog and not get taken in by these scammers. Never take anything you see on the Internet at face value, do your due diligence to confirm anything you receive in an Email, especially Emails about orders you did not place.