Fifty Cents Credit Scam


Get ready to check your bank and credit statements.
There’s a new scam out there that is part id theft, part credit scam, and, so far, still a big mystery to law enforcement.

Part of the problem is that the charges are so small many victims overlook them.  Those who don’t end up calling Deer Park resident Hugh Daly.

When the phone rings these days at JHD Productions, owner  Daly knows he's going to be yelled at.

"Calls from almost every state in the union.   People very angry, telling me why is JHD Productions charging me 50 cents, 30 cents for some stupid charge," says Daly.

Someone is using the name of his Long Island business and charging people's credit and debit cards. Most of the charges start extremely low, between 50 and 60 cents.

"But one lady in Arizona said she ignored the charge and three days later she got another charge from JHD for another 5,000 dollars," says Daly

The scam is so widespread we found two victims right here at NBC. Stephanie Lin and Maggie Edinger, who are NBC Pages, both noticed the strange charges on their online bank statements.

"I had a charge for 57 cents which I charge ridiculously small amounts usually that was a little lower than my usual ridiculous small amount," says Edinger.

Lin says her bank issued her a new debit card.

"You know you start wondering how did this happen how did these people get my information and you start worrying about your privacy you start getting a little paranoid," said Lin

Daly's company doesn't even take credit cards. Now the studio he spent thirty years building is mentioned all over the Internet linked to this scam.

His real life horror film recently got worse.  Someone opened a credit card under his company's name with a $25,000 limit.  The name they used was John Rambow.  The name very similar to the name John Rambo-the title character in the famous Sylvester Stallone films.

"So I say who is john Rambo. They say we can give you no information sir.  Well I said close the account right away," said Daly.

He’s contacted local, state, and federal authorities.  They say they're looking into it-but he's worried the longer they wait the more people are going to be scammed.

Suffolk county police said they are investigating the matter. The New York’s Attorney General's office never returned our calls.

Daly's posted a message on his website alerting people of the fraud.  He says it has slowed down the phone calls but he's still getting complaints, threats, and now he's had to hire a lawyer.

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