Douglas sheriff’s office warns of scams |

Douglas sheriff’s office warns of scams

by Sgt. Pat Brooks
Douglas County Sheriff’s Office

The Douglas County Sheriff’s Office has received several reports of fraudulent attempts to entice citizens into scams. These scams have different angles and twists but the ultimate outcome is the citizen loses money or their identity information.

One of the methods is a caller randomly advises he is a lawyer for a family member who is currently incarcerated for a crime. The lawyer states that the family member is very embarrassed about the situation and needs financial help for lawyer/court fees. The lawyer provides some family history and makes his claim sound legitimate. He then asks for a money order wired to an address, more often than not outside the United States. The lawyer/suspect asks that the person he is contacting not mention this situation to anyone else, because their family member is very embarrassed.

Another method is by e-mail. A person represents himself as royalty and has access to millions of dollars; however for him to access this money he needs your help. In return he will share his money, all you have to do is send him a money order and you will be handsomely rewarded. Your money order is typically sent to another country, where it is impossible to get your money returned.

In another ruse, a caller advises a potential victim that their computer has a virus or malware attached to a program. The caller asks the victim to allow him access into their computer from a remote site to fix the issues. The victim grants him access to their computer and, the suspect copies the data on the computer and steals whatever information that is in the computer.

Yet another is the compromise of credit cards. It is hard to say when this happens, however most times at a restaurant the waiter presents the bill and we use a credit card/debit card and off the waiter goes with all the information one needs to use the credit card online. They have the name, number, expiration and the little security code on the back. All the person has to do is transfer all this information and they use the card to purchase whatever online.

Unfortunately, in this day and age we have to protect ourselves with every piece of information we have. More often than not, unless you have subscribed to an anti-fraud warning company, legitimate persons or entities will not contact you under these circumstances, and solicit money or information from you.