Don’t Get Scammed

Don’t Get Scammed

Don’t get scammed!

What seems like an ordinary phone call can turn into a nightmare for some, a scam phone call.

The local police receive reports of individuals posing like someone from a utility company or even the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). They often scare you by saying your utility will be disconnected or threaten you with consequences like arrest. They manipulate you with fear to get you to give them immediate payment. The goal for them is to get you to buy a prepaid credit card, provide bank account information or a social security number. In these cases, the victim is instructed to go to a local drug or grocery store to purchase gift cards while on the phone with them. In some cases, the phony IRS will scare you into providing a credit card or bank account number to quickly make a payment. The only goal of these criminals is to steal your personal information and/or get money from you.

It is important to remember these things:

  • A utility company or IRS will NOT call you or come to your home for an outstanding payment or ask to see your utility bill.
  • Fraudsters will also send out “phishing” emails to get you to call a number or click to verify information.
  • The legitimate utility companies or the IRS, will NOT ask you for immediate payment by a pre-paid credit card or other currency.
  • They will NEVER ask for your social security information, passwords or account numbers.
  • No one from another city, state or country will call to tell you your grandchild, uncle, brother is being held, is in trouble and needs money.
  • If you suspect a scammer, HANG UP the phone.
  • DON’T ever give out personal information, even if the caller ID indicates a legitimate organization.
  • DON’T call a phone number left on your voicemail from these types of calls.

Other scammers pretend to be your internet provider or tech company. They tell you your computer has been infected with malware or a computer virus. Payment is demanded to fix the virus”. Just hang up!

If you are in doubt, take the person’s information and tell them you will call them back. Call a loved one or the local police department if you suspect a scam phone call.

Please take the time to discuss this important issue to identify scam issue with any senior citizens, friends or family. We have provided great resources to educate yourself.