Imposter Scams

There are people out there who love to work to steal your hard earned money. They scam you into believing they are someone they are not. They demand payment over the phone and threaten with prosecution. Never ever give them your personal information or wire money. Once you send money over the phone, it is gone. Below are a few examples of imposter scams. 

IRS Scams

There are scammers out there who will pretend to be the IRS or another company claiming your own them money or back taxes. They threaten to sue, arrest, or deport you if you do not pay them right away. They will ask you for payment over the phone or by sending money in another form. The caller may know some of your Social Security number or other personal information. 

The real IRS will not ask you to pay over the phone nor will they ask you to send a prepaid debit card or wire transfers. The IRS does not contact your local police to have you arrested. Do not wire money to these imposters. 

Craigslist Scams

You might be selling an item on Craigslist, OfferUp or any of the other marketplace app. You receive an offer but the person isn’t local. They agree to pay you by check, cashier check, money order, PayPal, gift card, or various other methods if you ship it to them. 

This is a sign that it could be a scam. Do not extend payment to anyone who cannot meet in person.

Tech Support Scams

You get a call from someone who says they are a computer technician. They might say they are from a well-known company like Microsoft, or maybe your internet service provider. They tell you there is a virus or other malware on your computer and if you give them remote access they can fix the issue. 

This is an example of a tech support scam. Never give control of your computer or give personal information to callers claiming to be a company. 

Grandkid Scams

If you are a grandparent, there are scammers out there who will pretend to be your grandchild. They will claim they need money for bail, a medical emergency, or any other kind of trouble. They will request for you to wire money immediately and may ask to keep it a secret. Sometimes they will try to convince you with information they found on social networking sites or by hacking into an email account to make it seem more real. 

The caller may not be who you think it is. This is an example of a grandkid scam. Hang up and call your grandchild to verify it is them and never send money over the phone.

Here is what you can do:

Check it out — before you wire money to anyone. Call the person, the government agency, or someone else you trust. Get the real story and then decide what to do. No government agency will ever ask you to wire money.

Please Report Scams - If you spot a scam, please report it to the police, Federal Trade Commission (FTC), or Federal Bureau of Investigation Crime Complaint Center (IC3).

Reporting to the Federal Trade Commission
1-877-FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357) or TTY 1-866-653-4261

Reporting to the FBI IC3

Please pass this information on to your friends, family, and neighbors. You might know these calls are from imposters, but chances are you also might know someone who doesn’t.

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