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Does anybody know if this kind of thing is as common in other countries as it is in the US? Are there stronger controls in, say, Germany or France, or Norway and Denmark, that make abuse on this scale impossible? Or is the situation as bad in those countries as here?

I'm from the Netherlands, in my fifties, but haven't heard of anything like this here. A quick Google of the Dutch internet also turned up nothing.

There are similar shady companies in Germany that try individual scams surrounding phantom bills, sometimes for phantom services, but it generally stops at that company and selling dept is not a thing. Most countries also don't have central credit scoring entities like Equifax which scare people into avoiding bad credit history and more likely to just pay.

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