The Roswell Police Department Criminal Investigations Division would like to offer the public these tips regarding telephone and email scams:
- Entities providing services to you, such as government agencies, will never call or email you and request payment using gift cards, money cards or wire transfers.
- Law enforcement agencies will never call or email you stating you have to pay a fine to avoid being served a warrant for your arrest.
- Emails requesting you to send payment for “taxes” owed on money from another country or owed to the IRS are not legitimate. The IRS does not use email to send notices about delinquent taxes.
- If you find a product on a website, such as Craigslist, and payment is requested before seeing or taking possession of the item, use caution, especially if you are asked to pay with a gift card, money card or wire transfer.
- If you are contacted by a person you don’t know requesting your help and promising to pay you back plus interest, know it is a scam.
- If you are making a payment for something you believe is legitimate, do not send cash, money cards or gift cards. Use a cashier’s check or something of that nature.
- Job offers involving being paid to display company logos on a vehicle are a common scam. If you receive a check to pay for “start-up costs” and are asked to deposit it and send the unused remainder back, it is most likely a scam.
- If you receive payment for something you are selling and a check for more than the purchase price is sent and you are asked to deposit it and return the remainder of the money, it is a scam.
- Most importantly use common sense. If it seems too good to be true it probably is.
Many of these scams are carried out from other countries, but the phone number you see may look to be local. The numbers can be disguised when scammers rout calls through several companies and use special software.
If you see an email address that seems odd – it may have a company, business or government agency name followed by “@outlook” or “@gmail” or any other public email provider instead of a company or other unique email server identification – be very cautious, this could be a scam.
Please keep these tips in mind during the holiday season. These types of scams increase at this time since scammers rely on people’s generosity, kindness, and even fear.