SCAM ALERT: Thieves Are Targeting The Elderly, How To Avoid Being A Victim
FRESNO, Calif. (KMPH) —
There's another scam alert you need to be aware of. This one involves thieves telling elderly victims they won a million dollars and then taking their money instead.
"My name is Mr. John Thomas and I'm calling from the Mega Million okay. I'm calling to inform you that you have won $2.5-million in a certified cashier's check coming to your residence today," says a voicemail from a suspected scammer.
People all over the Valley are getting calls like the one left on a KMPH Fox 26 News viewers voicemail. However, the calls are from thieves trying to take your money.
Susie Alvarez got a similar call and she lost $200.
"I thought I was dumb," says Susie Alvarez, "I felt nave and I felt as old as I am, I should have known better."
Alvarez says the caller told her she won a million dollars from "Publishers Clearing House." The bad guy told her to put the money on a "Green Dot Money Pak Card." She says he called her back a few hours later and she gave him the card's number.
"I'm on a fixed, I'm on disability and it's hard to make ends meet," adds Alvarez, "By the grace of God I'm doing alright. Whoever did this to me, they're going to get theirs."
Alvarez just wants to warn people if they get a suspicious call to ignore it or hang up.
"They really are after us," says Alvarez, "They seem to know who we are, who's on disability, and who's on a fixed income. They look for vulnerable people, just like me."
Crooks will tell you a bunch of different stories to get their hands on your money. Here are some of the Green Dot Car scenarios; you won "Publishers Clearing House", the lottery, or a gift card. Also, the bad guys say your utility bills, credit cards, or taxes are past due. We've even heard of thieves saying that your loved one are in trouble and need money.
Green Dot card scams are very hard for police to investigate. Officers say it's because the phone numbers are almost impossible to trace.