Local News

Phone Scam Alert

Phone Scam Alert

Bill Stephens

April 4th, 2017


An Elderly resident of Union County received a phone call Saturday night telling her that she was the winner of $250,000 from the Publisher Clearing House. All she had to do to claim her winnings was to provide the caller her bank information so that they could deposit the money in her account. The resident did give this information to the caller. When the Residents’ daughter was informed of what her mother had done she called the bank and found out that all of her mother’s savings had been moved to her checking account and someone was preparing to withdrawal all the money. The bank and the daughter were able to stop the transactions but only in the nick of time. So please be aware of phone scams that are becoming more and more frequent especially to elderly residents. Here are some tips to avoid becoming a victim of a phone scam…
• If you get a call saying you’re a winner – don’t pay any money to collect supposed sweepstakes winnings. Legitimate operations won’t require you to pay to collect your winnings.

• It’s against federal law to play a foreign lottery – so if you get a call it is likely a scam.

• Never wire money to anyone with whom you are not familiar.

• Never provide anyone with personal information such as bank accounts, pin numbers or Social Security numbers.

• Check any unfamiliar area codes before returning calls.

• Be aware that there are many 3-digit area codes that connect callers to international telephone numbers – especially 876.

• If you do not have Caller ID, consider adding it to your phone service. Caller ID allows you to add a Call Intercept feature that screens calls and offers the option to reject suspicious international calls.

• If you do not make international calls, ask your telephone provider to block outgoing international calls.

Please do not give out any personal information to people you do not know. Everyone must stay vigilant against these crimes.

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