Craig Police Department issues fraud alert

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What to do ...

Area residents who receive possible scam calls should:

• Ask callers personal questions to verify their identity.

• Get possible scammers to call you back to give you an opportunity to verify their information with other friends and family members.

• Never commit to a money transfer.

• Never give out personal information over the phone.

• Do not call a suspected scammer back on any line they may give you.

Source: Craig Police Department

The Craig Police Department has issued a fraud alert in response to an incident where a scammer tried to con a Craig resident out of money.

According to a release, a Craig resident received a call from a male claiming to be a grandson who was in need of money due to problems in a foreign country.

Canada, Trinidad, Jamaica, Panama and a variety of countries in Europe have been popular choices among con artists of late, according to the release.

The scammer often poses as a relative claiming to have been robbed, mugged, involved in an accident or arrested.

In some instances, a second party may come on the line posing as an attorney involved in the legal process to make the scam sound more legitimate.

The Craig Police Department advises residents to do investigative work in the event they receive a similar call.

“Ask the caller personal questions that only a friend or a relative would know,” Sgt. John Forgay of the Craig Police Department said. “Luckily, that’s exactly what the person did in this case.”

Yet, scammers seem to be getting more sophisticated all of the time, Forgay said. As is increasingly the case, con artists do their homework and may be prepared to answer personal questions.

“If there is any doubt,” Forgay said. “Ask the caller to call back after you have phoned other friends and family members to verify their information. But never call a suspected scammer back on any line they may give you.”

According to Forgay, con artists are using the Internet to pull similar scams through e-mail and are using social media websites, such as Facebook, to gather the personal information they use.

“It’s hard to say how (scammers) will revamp it once enough people begin to catch on,” Forgay said. “The biggest thing is never commit to a money transfer and never give personal information over the phone.”

To report a suspicious call, call the Craig Police Department at 826-2360.

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