I need to take the opportunity this week to talk about telephone scams. The number of scam attempts and successful scams have became alarming. One of the hottest scams right now is the bogus Publisher’s Clearing House call. Residents will receive a phone call advising them they have won a large sum of money. The caller, who is usually a smooth talker and appears well knowledgeable about the person receiving the call. This tells us they purposely selected you as a target. They’ll start asking for personal information on the ruse of sending you money.
Often they’ll convince the individual they will be showing up at their house with their money soon and they will ask details about the meeting. The conversation will eventually evolve into the caller requesting a fee or some form of payment. That is the RED FLAG. Anytime the caller begins asking for money from you, it’s a SCAM. Recently a few residents have fallen victim to this. I know of different residents losing anywhere from $3,000 to $40,000. All of the different scams will ask for good faith money or handling fees, etc.
My best advice is for people to not engage in conversations and to hang up on the caller. If you really won money, they’ll get it to you. If they call you on the phone with something that sounds too good to be true, it most likely is a scam.
Feel free to call your local law enforcement agency if you are not sure about a telephone scam call. Also we urge folks to talk to their elderly relatives and caution them about these calls. Again, best advice is to hang up on them. It’s not the law, but it may keep you from losing your hard earned money.
Until next time, give me a holler if you need anything. 830-769-3434.
DAVID SOWARD is the elected Sheriff of Atascosa County. He has been with the sheriff’s office for 42 years and he is in his 7th year as Sheriff. Sheriff Soward holds a Master Jailer’s License as well as a Master Peace Officer’s License from the State of Texas.