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Buy a Heart Scam

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Buy a Heart Scam

Old 12th Jul 2001, 22:01
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Angry Buy a Heart Scam

Just thought I'd try a wider audience for this topic which is already being debated over on the Cabin Crew forum at http://www.pprune.org/cgibin/ultimatebb.cgi ?ubb=get_topic&f=29&t=000640

There is a scam doing the rounds of the UK at the moment under the guise of 'Women Empowering Women' and it has severely infiltrated the cabin crew of many airlines. In the scam women are initially persuaded to 'buy a heart' for 3,000 amd then they move one layer down an inverted pyramid until eventually they are the 'receiver' and they receive 24,000. To get to this level they have to persuade 8 other females, usually friends or family to also buy hearts for 3,000 and so on.

What they don't realise that there is no product being produced or investment being made and it is just a pyramid scam. For every person that puts in 3,000 that person has to persuade another 8 women to do the same. For every woman that has been successful and received 24,000 there are 8 others somewhere down the line that will never see their money again.

The latest I have seen is junior cabin crew being bullied by their seniors to invest in the scam because of the lack of 'investors' to protect their own lack of foresight or greed. This is severely affecting the cabin crew in my company and no doubt in others as the hysteria of it sweeps the country.

If you know of a similar scam going on in your company please let us know about it here. We work as a team with our cabin crew and I would like to see those thieves who are responsible for this corruption hung out to dry with their ill-gotten gains.

Anyone exposing or attacking this scam is branded as a jealous male who would like to keep women from making money easily. They rely on 'sisterhood' and use that excuse to try and keep the scam going as long as possible so that they are not proved the thieves that they are. As others realise that they are likely to lose their money they become desperate too.

I have already heard about several cabn crew in my company who have maxed out their credit cards and borrowed from family and friends to get into this scam without realising that they are risking losing not only their money but also their friends if they should lose out too.

For those of you in the UK or who have access to UK TV there is an investigative report on this scam tonight at 10:20pm on ITV with Trevor McDonald after the News at Ten.

For a very informative website that explains these scams and others please have a look at Pyramid Scams which explains how they work and affect millions of people. They are not aimed solely at women either but I draw attention to this one because it is and is affecting many of my colleagues at work and has allegedly filtered some way up the management chain (or down it) so stopping it is even more difficult.

[ 12 July 2001: Message edited by: Capt PPRuNe ]
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Old 12th Jul 2001, 22:17
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Danny,it is rife in most of the airlines operating out from Manch at the moment,certainly in my company and the charter operator that my missus works for.
In my company it is the few that stand to make a killing leaving the rest wondering how, and what happened to their cash.After all this comes crashing down there will be a lot of angry girls refusing to work with each other.Having said that, it is supposed to be females only,however things must be getting tight as a few male flightdeck have now joined in. MUGS !!!! But they have to use a female name on the heart.

If it looks too good to be true, then it is.
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Old 12th Jul 2001, 22:21
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Spot on Danny; this is not a new scam, but it seems to get new victims every time.

The Nigerian advance fee fraud has a new variation too, involving allegedly stained USD100 bills. Customs and the police are vigilant, but if it didn't work sometimes, nobody woud try it.

Be careful out there!

If it looks too good to be true: IT IS!!
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Old 12th Jul 2001, 22:53
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more info on "women empowering women" at www.guardian.co.uk/Archive/Article/0,4273,4217370,00.html
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Old 13th Jul 2001, 00:52
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Happened in most Eastern Block countries in the late 90's. I'd rather sell Tupperware.
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Old 13th Jul 2001, 01:39
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Never ceases to amaze me how gullible people can be.

I remember going to a presentation 30 years ago for a new wonder cleaner called 'Kimbo' ( I think). All you had to do was invest in a crate of the stuff to sell and persuade another ten people to do the same and lo you would become a millionaire in short time.

I was 17 at the time and although it looked good on paper I did not get sucked in thinking that nothing could be that easy.

Sad that people are still getting caught.
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Old 13th Jul 2001, 01:50
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Same as M.Mouse I just can't understand how supposedly intelligent people can get sucked in to these scams. I never know whether to feel sorry for them or be angry at their sheer greed and stupidity.
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Old 13th Jul 2001, 01:56
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Too true it's rife. In our company nearly all the cabin crew have bought into it. You are quite right, if you point out the mathematics involved and the fact that for one person to make money, eight must lose it, you are accused of 'putting women down' and being a 'jealous male'. I had a hard time convincing my other half to avoid a similar scam at the hospital where she works. Of interest to everyone my next door neighbours daughter has made over 102,000 out of this deal..her path is simple, she starts the pyramids. So she gets all the money from the first level to the last level. To cover her tracks she then 'buys a heart' off the girls in the first level to demonstrate 'sisterhood' and 'helping them out'. So when the pyramid collapses they don't blame her cos 'she bought a heart off them'. She then starts another pyramid. I chatted to her about it and she said that 'you would have to be mad to buy into one unless you were in the receiver position or the first row'.

Anyway there are some girls out there pushing this scam and it has nothing to do with empowering women and everything to do with lining their pockets. Her sister started two pyramids and took 36k in the first four days.

If you think about it if she starts a pyramid and it actually matures she gets 14 girls to give her 3k. If it goes one more level then the girls below her get their money. She deliberately only sells it to friends at the first level then to strangers below that, cos the girls at the first level are 'likely to get some money back but the ones above that will probably lose'. For information she runs a model agency and has hundreds of impressionable young girls on her books she can tap into or bully into buying in. Its as easy as that in an airline. Get some of the senior crew involved and the rest follow like sheep.

My girlie wanted to buy into one and I said not to bother, but to start her own pyramid...for some reason she thought starting one was immoral as it seemed like theft to take all the money from the entire pyramid, but it was okay to buy into an existing one and just try and get her friends involved. Fortunately she has seen sense and not bothered.
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Old 13th Jul 2001, 01:58
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I've read the threads on this topic with increasing disbelief... I hadn't heard anything about this WEW scam in my corner of the globe (very long way from IOW) - how many times have basically the same scams gone around? Doesn't *everyone* know about them by now? They damn well should! I read recently of a resurgence of the 'Nigerian letter' scam... unbe***kinglievable.

Flame me who will, but IMHO any employee who solicits money for one of these schemes/scams 'on the job' should be instantly fired for gross misconduct... doesn't get much more gross than thieving from your colleagues. No excuses whatever, no exceptions!

R1, amazed
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Old 13th Jul 2001, 03:04
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A few quick calculations show why the majority of participants in these ridiculous schemes will lose out. Once the scheme collapses (and they all do eventually) there will be approximately 7 times as many losers as there are winners. For example, a typical scheme (with 8 for 1 recruiting) that collapses after just 4 layers will have 4096 losers and only 585 winners. Someone who chooses to participate in such a scheme hoping that they will be one of the winners is essentially hoping that they will be part of a successful fraud in which a whole load of people get ripped off.
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Old 13th Jul 2001, 03:05
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Unbelievable, just cx out the thread Danny refers to.
Some correspondants ie. Bird2perches, wideaisle, pants off tiger, and nothing to declare actually cannot see how morally corrupt this thieving is, having made their money but knowing the scheme can only withstand so many layers within the pyramid. Hey presto, lots of innocents deeply out of pocket.
This scam is particuly devisive within the airlines as seniority could be used as a lever, particularily with lots of young new entrants joining on a weekly basis who may be vunerable to this sort of coersion.

Ranger One.. You beat me to it... Yes, sack the the thieves. :o
Old 13th Jul 2001, 03:47
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By no means limited to the airline fraternity. Here's a warning posted to workers at our favourite national telecomm's company.

" You need to be aware that some of our people are getting very involved in "pyramid investment".

" Basically this works in the same way as chain letters and those joining the "club" make a payment to join and then recruit 10 other people who also pay to join. The promise is made that when you reach the top of the pyramid you collect a large sum of money that has been donated by others joining after you. Of course, in reality, any area (especially a work place) becomes saturated and many people never get their money back let alone make a profit.

This seems to be especially rife at ********, with *********** people being the ringleaders. People are currently paying literally thousands to join, although as yet no one has received any money."

A very sad and heartless scam which seems to be spreading like wildfire through our corporate system.


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Old 13th Jul 2001, 09:12
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I'm surprised that it does'nt attract the law. Pyramid schemes are illegal in many countries.
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Old 13th Jul 2001, 14:07
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When will people learn there is no such thing as Free Money. Even if you win the Lottery millions of people have to lose at least a for you to win!
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Old 13th Jul 2001, 15:18
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Absolutley agree with the posts here, I meant to respond to this a couple of days ago. It is (as mentioned) hard to know whether to feel for these poor mugs, or see them as purely greedy, self centred "I'm all right jack" types.

Certain individuals here (see above) will defend these schemes with the "everyone's an adult" line, somehow by using this I get the feeling they themselves realise this is nothing but a scam and people HAVE to lose out, don't tell me you don't understand the maths of it (self centred b******s, sorry mods).

These things literally ruin lives, please just don't do it no matter how tempting they seem. Congratulations to those of you who have made money from it, enjoy spending someone else's loss will you ? You really are disgraceful, but then that probably doesn't bother you.

Back to the top !

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Old 14th Jul 2001, 01:03
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As an ex cabin crew member now working for Trading Standards may I add to this discussion. From what I understand from our enforcement guys there are laws to control pyramid schemes but they only apply where goods are involved. As this one is just a straight forward hand over of cash the regs may not apply. We haven't received many calls about this, probably because people are too ashamed to admit to what they have done. PPRUNE is to be congratulated for advertising this type of thing. It is only when people hear it from their own that they actually take notice of what others are saying. I only wish people would throw junk mail etc in the bin when they receive it. The one thats causing the most problems at the moment are those that offer holidays for as low as 30. Read the glossy brochure and apply your own interpretation and you think it's a good deal. Take the literal meaning of the words and all they promise you is a cheap holiday when it suits them to offer it and to any destination they can get, at as short a notice period as they like. Turn it down because you can't do it or don't like it and you've lost your money. The companies concerned say they intend to honour their promises at some stage in the future and always manage to show evidence that someone actually got what they said. Therefore we can't touch them. Whether you will get what you think you'll get is highly debateable. If it seems too good to be true it probably is. Why do people still think they can get something for nothing?
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