Scams reported in areaIf someone you don’t know asks you to wire money, don’t, say area law enforcement officials. Wiring money is a red flag, they said. Chances are, the transaction is a scam.
By: By Katie Ryan-Anderson, The Jamestown Sun, The Jamestown Sun
If someone you don’t know asks you to wire money, don’t, say area law enforcement officials.
Wiring money is a red flag, they said. Chances are, the transaction is a scam.
The Stutsman County Sheriff’s Department said it receives multiple complaints per week from residents saying scammers are targeting them. Scams include winning a sweepstakes, inheriting an estate or secret shopper ads. And while scammers target mostly the elderly, any age can fall victim, according to the Jamestown Police Department.
Many times, the scammer asks the victim to cash a check and then wire part of the money. That money typically leaves the country. Once it does, law enforcement officials cannot retrieve it, said Jason Falk, detective for the Stutsman County Sheriff’s Office.
“Any time you’ve got to send money, it’s just not right,” said Sheriff Chad Kaiser.
Thousands of dollars are stolen each year, police said.
“The common theme is always wiring money,” Falk said.
One of the more recent scams is the Reader’s Digest scam, claiming to be from the magazine. The victim thinks he or she won a prize and then cashes a fraudulent check. The victim then wires part of the money to the scammer. Since the check is phony, the bank later reclaims the funds it moved to the victim’s account.
Another is the grandparent scam, where scammers call a household, claiming to be a relative. A “grandson,” for example, may call saying he’s been arrested in a foreign country and needs money right away. The victim then wires the money and law enforcement cannot track it.
“Nothing legit is going to have you wiring money,” Falk said.
For more information or to report a scam, contact the Jamestown Police Department at 252-1000 or the Stutsman County Sheriff’s Office at 252-9000.
Sun reporter Katie Ryan-Anderson can be reached at 701-952-8454 or by e-mail at kryan-anderson@ jamestownsun.com