Phone scams are nothing new, but one with a new twist was recently reported to the Dalton Police Department. Instead of requesting bank card numbers or other identifying information, this time the scammers told the potential victim that they would show up to pick up the money once it was loaded onto a gift card.
In this case, the scammer called from a number in the 585 area code (upstate New York) and identified himself as a representative of Publishers Clearing House and told the complainant that he had won a large cash prize and that the prize was to be delivered to his home. The complainant would have to make a payment, however, to receive the prize and that could not be deducted from the prize money. The complainant was instructed to load $850 onto a Walmart gift card which would be picked up by a “representative” before the prize money would be delivered. The scammer claimed that the prize money would be delivered by a Brinks truck with a police escort. The scammer also told the complainant to visit a website which they said would validate his claims. The complainant recognized the call as a scam and refused to participate and then called police.
As always, if something sounds like it’s too good to be true then it probably is. Never give out your bank information or other identifying information to a cold caller over the phone.
Anyone with information on this scam is asked to please contact Detective John Helton at (706) 278-9085, extension 143.