ilham – A PSA

wwx0kqgWhat is that gibberish on my title you ask, and what the heck does a sombrero with crossbones have to do with it? Well, keep reading and I’ll tell you.

I had an experience recently that gave me reason to post a service announcement for family, friends, bloggers and anyone else who might stumble upon my blog.

With my husband laid up from work recovering from an injury, he went through our bills and asked if I’d taken a trip to Mexico while he was in the hospital. Huh? Yes, that’s right, there was a charge on my credit card from Mexico! Did I accidentally fly to Mexico while sleep walking in hopes to escape all of my troubles? No. Did I loan my credit card to anyone who used it to buy something from Mexico? No. Did something I buy online get manufactured in Mexico? No.

$50.14 doesn’t sound like a lot of money. Neither does the foreign exchange charge of $1.74 from dollars to pesos. I wish I had visited Cabos and bought several fruity, umbrella drinks, but again … no.

My credit card statement supplied the name of the company, ilham, along with a toll free number to call. So, I called the number. The automated response that picked up said, “all representatives are busy” and quickly switched me onto hold with pleasant sounding music. There was no company name mentioned. I could smell the fishy fish across the gulf from Mexico to my home in Florida, and I promptly hung up.

Next … I googled ilham. Hundreds of people with charges on their credit cards of $50.18 or $50.20, etc., had no idea what it was for.

Next stop … call the credit card company. Turns out, ilham claimed to be a computer software data information company, and had set me up to be charged this monthly fee. Needless to say, this was taken care of immediately. The credit card company was aware of the problem with previous customers.

It seems that this is the latest thing, charge hundreds of credit cards minimal monthly fees in hopes the user won’t question it. They disguise themselves as different company names.

So, friends, family, blogging buddies … make sure you check every charge on your statement.

Now you are aware, thus ends this PSA.



  1. I check every statement religiously. Being a business manager and all. Once I went into the gas station to buy gas last year and they said my card wouldn’t work. Called the company and discovered that they had found three illegal charges from Texas on it. The credit card company was so good and cooperative. After hanging up, I felt like they really cared for their customers. So glad you were diligent and found that thievery.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Good for you for making this public Lori. I had trouble a couple of years ago where someone had used my name and a previous address of mine to make purchases – it took time and a lot of angst to get it all sorted.


    1. So true, EllaDee. Good that you are vigilant. My bro read this blog post and checked his statement. He found a charge from the exact same company as posted here, and he lives 1,200 miles away from me. That’s just crazy!


  3. My wife and I check every single item on the credit card bills – even if it’s only a $4.50 charge – and especially if it’s a $4.50 charge.

    Thank you, Lori, for making this scam public.



    1. Good that you check everything, Eric. My bro contacted me after he read this and the exact same scam company had gotten him, too. Crazy! I’m glad to get it out there for people.


  4. Oh, that’s horrible. It’s growing ever more difficult to be diligent with all our online financial interactions, and yet diligent we must be. Good thing your husband spotted that. Thanks for making others aware. I’ll definitely be on the lookout.


    1. It made my husband and I actually question if it was just something we forgot about and thought about letting it go. I’ll bet many people do that. I’m glad to get the word out there.


    1. It made us think that maybe we forgot something we had charged, and some people may just let it go thinking the same thing. Glad to get it out there for others to be aware.


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