Collect Calls from Prison Scam Hundreds

In a new(ish) variant of a scam that’s been around for ages, prisoners at a Dallas-area correctional facility have been calling numbers — collect, as all prison calls are — and getting their unsuspecting victims to hand over control of the phone by dialing *72. The prisoners then proceed to run up ridiculous charges on the victims’ phone bills.

The stupidity of the folks who fall for this is fairly impressive, but not nearly as impressive as what the corrections officials said when the scam was made known to them. I’m paraphrasing here, but it was something like, “Well, we have thousands of inmates, and one telephone, so it’s awfully difficult to know exactly who’s making these calls.”


Because there are no security cameras in a goddamn jail? Get serious. Put a camera right on the phone and log all calls. Synchronise the clock on the call log with the timestamp on the security videotape. DEAD SIMPLE. This isn’t complicated, nor is it expensive. The capability is already there. USE IT.

By the way, if anyone can find a news story on the WWW about this (I saw it on The Early Show on CBS this morning), please let me know. I’d like to link it.

For the people who fall for this scam:

Red FormanRed Forman Dumbass Rating: Hyde (Dumbass) Hyde (Dumbass)

For the corrections officials who won’t do anything about it:

Red FormanRed Forman Dumbass Rating: Hyde (Dumbass) Hyde (Dumbass) Hyde (Dumbass) Hyde (Dumbass)

posted by Chris on 31 July 2004 at 0946 in general


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Comment by Raena Armitage

I was astonished to find that this OMG DONT PRESS THE KEYS!!!1` story is, in fact, true!

posted at 0946 on 31 July 2004

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