Anatomy of a Toner Pirate: What to Look For

phone scam

Toner pirates are becoming a big problem for all kinds of companies--and you don't want to be next. Here are a few ways to identify a toner pirate so you don't fall victim to their marauding ways!

A Day in the Life

Let's pretend, for the moment, that you're a toner pirate.

You're a telemarketing scammer--but, of course, you don't call yourself that. Instead, you call up unsuspecting companies and pose as their supplier, using a name just similar enough that employees might not notice the difference. You ask innocent questions about their printers, their organization, and the serial numbers on their machines--and once the well-meaning employees give you this information, you're all set to put the real scam into play.

You call again a few days later, insisting that you're the company's supplier and that you're about to raise prices on the exact type of toner that their machines use. However, you promise that the employees can save their company all kinds of money by paying you, the good-for-nothing toner pirate, right now.

If the company doesn't have good managed print services to help them keep track of their supplies, orders, needs, and machines, you've probably just hit the jackpot. They'll fall for your scam and send you the money, and in return, you'll leave them with a plunder of low-quality, almost-useless toner they probably don't even need.

What to Do

Now, since you're not a toner pirate, it's important to defend your company against these scams. Here are a few quick tips!

  • Don't give out info.

Never answer questions about your employees, your supply orders, or your machines.

  • Don't order over the phone.

Leave the ordering to the appropriate department and remember not to buy toner over the phone.

  • Ask for everything in writing.

Just like real pirates, toner pirates don't seem capable of writing much of anything. If you push them to lay out the specifics, they'll give themselves away by being dodgy and unhelpful.

Looking for more info on toner pirates? Want to protect yourself with managed print services? Contact us today!