Scams and Fraud

1/24/2023 | By Seniors Guide Staff

The Federal Trade Commission reports an uptick in scammers impersonating well-known businesses in an attempt to rip consumers off. Renewal request scams have proliferated, including one that seems to come from Best Buy’s tech support service, Geek Squad.

A renewal request scam mimics auto-renewal services to trick you into paying for subscriptions you don’t need or want. The scammer sends out renewal notifications saying you will be automatically charged to renew your membership. If you want to dispute the charge or cancel, the notice says you must call a phone number within 24 hours.

This scam, specifically impersonating Geek Squad, recently targeted a staff member at Seniors Guide.

WARNING! If you get such a notification, do NOT call the phone number as instructed! The scammer might:

  • Ask for remote access to your computer, which can enable them to steal online banking credentials, money, and identity.
  • Ask for bank account information, which can also be used to get unauthorized money from you.
  • Issue a fake refund transaction, make it look like they refunded you too much, then request you pay them back.

These messages can be scary. Instead of responding directly to the message, the FTC recommends that you:

  • Contact the company directly – in this case, Geek Squad – using a number you find from a legitimate source.
  • Check your bank and credit card account for unauthorized transactions. If you see one, report it immediately and ask the institution to reverse it.

If automatic renewals or payments were set up without your knowledge or consent, contact your financial institution to stop them immediately.

Scams similar to renewal request scams

Online renewal requests scams are one of the most common type of scam. These involve scammers sending out emails or messages claiming that a user’s subscription or license is about to expire, and they must pay a fee in order to renew it.

Digital product scams are similar but involve scammers offering fake or expired software licenses or other digital products for sale at an inflated price.

Software license renewal scams target users who have already purchased a legitimate license but are tricked into buying an additional one. In this case, scammers claim that the original license has expired.

By understanding these different types of renewal request scams and how they work, you can protect yourself from becoming a victim.

If you see a scam or other fraud, report it to the FTC at

Learn more about scams and fraud, including ones targeting seniors, in the Seniors Guide Scams & Fraud bulletin.

Seniors Guide Staff

Seniors Guide has been addressing traditional topics and upcoming trends in the senior living industry since 1999. We strive to educate seniors and their loved ones in an approachable manner, and aim to provide them with the right information to make the best decisions possible.