Police Winter

Darien Police Offer Advice on Staying Safe During the Holidays

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Happy Holidays! The men and women of the Darien Police Department hope you have a wonderful time celebrating with your friends, family, and neighbors. __________

— an announcement from Darien Police Department


To ensure a peaceful holiday season, please consider the following safety tips:

If you’re planning to go out of town for the holidays, let a trustworthy neighbor know so that they can keep an eye on your home. Don’t hide a key outside the house! Consider placing a hold on your mail and newspaper delivery.

Charity Scam pic FTC website 12-15-17

Don’t Give to a Charity Imposter: Here Are Some Tips for Avoiding That

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When you give to a charity, you’re giving because you care and want to help — and you want to be sure your money actually gets to those you’re trying to help. But scammers who pretend to be a charity try to get to your wallet. So consider these tips before you give:

Rule out anyone who asks you to send cash, pay with a gift card, or wire money. Confirm the exact name of the charity and do some research, especially when donating for the first time. Search for the name of the charity online — plus the word “complaint” or “scam.” That’s one way to learn about a charity’s reputation.

Check Check Fraud Check Scam 07-21-17 https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Sweet_success.jpg

Norwalk Community College Student, 18, Loses $700 in Classic Check Scam

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An 18-year-old Norwalk Community College student lost $700 last week to two men who used a classic scam, sometimes called a “fake check scam,” that’s probably several times older than the victim. The scammers knew what many people don’t: You can cash a check at your bank and walk away with the money, whether or not there’s money in the account named on that check. The bank, which doesn’t immediately check the other account, expects the bank’s customer to make up the difference if there’s insufficient funds — or no funds at all — to back up the check. On Wednesday, Nov. 29, a Fairfield man walked into Darien Police Headquarters to report the fraud.

Town Seal Patrol Car

Police: He Said They Wanted to Reimburse Her. Instead, He Took $9,000

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A Darien woman was scammed out of $9,000 through a more sophisticated scam than usual, involving a caller who convinced her to download a program to her computer. Darien police described what happened this way:

On Tuesday afternoon, Oct. 24, the woman, a Long Neck Point Road resident, told police she believed she had been scammed. She said that she had received a phone call from a male (when the call came, police didn’t say). The male said he worked for a subsidiary of Microsoft and that his company owed her money as a reimbursement for computer software she had bought.

Bicycle Bike Darien Railroad Station Darien Train Station 09-18-17

Preventing Bicycle Thefts: What Darien Police Are Doing and What You Can Do

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After four locked bicycles recently were stolen from bike racks at the Darien and Noroton Heights railroad station, Darienite.com asked police Detective James Palmieri, a spokesman for the department, what police are doing and what bicycle owners can do to make the thefts less likely.  

The recent thefts are only the latest spate in a long problem with stolen bicycles in town. Many unlocked bicycles are stolen from various locations around Darien, but bikes tend to be locked up at the train stations while commuters are at work. One suggestion Palmieri made for bicycle owners was to record the serial number of the bicycle: Knowing it can help police when they look through pawn shop records or if they suspect a bicycle is stolen and want to confirm it. Here’s what Palmieri said in an email exchange:

Darienite.com: Have police started watching the bike racks more closely? 

Palmieri: Yes, we have a general time frame that seems to be when these bikes go missing so we have been watching during those times.

Computer Keyboard 8-2-16

Federal Trade Commission Advice After that Equifax Data Breach: What You Can Do to Protect Yourself

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You shred your sensitive financial documents. You’re careful about not letting too many people know your Social Security number. You cover your hand when you’re punching in your credit card passcode. And then Equifax, the credit reporting agency, gets sensitive financial data for 143 million people stolen from it by a hacker. After this has been done, you may think there’s no hope.

Telephone Scam Cops 09-08-17

If You Get a Call Demanding an Immediate Tax Payment, It Isn’t from Darien Police

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You get a call from someone purporting to be an official, or even someone in law enforcement, who demands that you pay a tax bill or face dire consequences — and the caller is demanding that money now. That’s what happened to a Darien resident who recently received a call from someone purporting to be a police officer — and Caller I.D. indicated the call was coming from the Darien Police Department. THAT’S how clever these scammers can be. Darien police just issued a warning about it. Here’s an announcement from Darien police about the problem and the incident:

The Darien Police Department would like to warn residents about a sophisticated phone scam that is targeting taxpayers not only in Darien, but throughout the country.

Greenwich Police Detective Mark Solomon GFP 05-21-17

Skimming Devices That Let Thieves Steal from Your Card Accounts Can Be Pretty Sophisticated

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Greenwich police Detective Mark Solomon recently shared an overview of recent frauds using “skimming”  that steal credit or debit card information from unsuspecting victims.

The devices can be disguised as parts of ATM machines or work inside gas pumps and other point-of-sale devices. Even the machines on train station platforms have been rigged by greedy criminals eager to access credit card information. The machines often are set up by criminals, frequently in gangs of 20 to 30 members from Eastern Europe. ___________

— This article previously was published by Greenwich Free Press. ___________

Solomon is a member of the Connecticut Financial Task Force — which includes the IRS, the U.S. Postal Service, state police and local agencies — said it’s a challenge to keep on top of the ingenious strategies that target credit card and bank account information.

Work from Home sign Employment Jobs 05-07-17

Watch Out for Fraud When Summer Job Opportunities Come Up, Better Business Bureau Says

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If you are looking for part-time or full-time employment to make a few dollars over the summer, Connecticut Better Business Bureau cautions job-seekers to be careful when considering an unsolicited employment opportunity. “There are all sorts of legitimate jobs available, even work-at-home opportunities, but there are a number of red flags that can tell if you are applying for a real job or if someone is trying to get you to part with your personal and financial information,” says Connecticut Better Business Bureau Spokesman, Howard Schwartz. ___________
— an announcement from the Connecticut Better Business Bureau
The red flags include, but are not limited to:
An offer that sounds like a dream job with no training or experience required; being offered jobs by telephone even if you never applied for them; promises of a generous salary; no face to face meeting and demands for upfront money sent by untraceable methods such as wire transfer or gift cards. The “recruiter” will tell potential victims they are hired without any face to face meeting, and that the candidate will have to send money upfront, supposedly for background checks, training and materials, their Social Security Number for income tax purposes and a bank account number to arrange direct deposit of salary. A legitimate employer will never ask for any of your personal information until after you have met, received a formal written offer with a job description, salary and other remuneration details.

Scam Online Reviews and Recommendations video FTC 03-22-17

New Scam for Small Business Owners: Social Media Notices of Government ‘Grants’

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If you’re a small business owner, you’re not getting a government business grant notice through Facebook. And if you get a message from a friend on Facebook asking them to “confirm” a business grant, it’s not coming from that friend. These are just new ways that have recently popped up to scam you, the Federal Trade Commission says. Don’t even reply to them — there’s some risk in even doing that. Here’s what the FTC has to say about it:

Scammers try to contact you in many ways.

FBI Infographic thumbnail part 02-22-17

How to Lower Your Chance of Getting Scammed by an ATM Skimming Device

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You can make it less likely that you’ll become the victim of a skimming device placed on an ATM by a thief by following these steps, according to the FBI. Here’s the FBI’s list of tips:

Inspect the ATM, gas pump, or credit card reader before using it — be suspicious if you see anything loose, crooked, or damaged, or if you notice scratches or adhesive/tape residue. When entering your PIN, block the keypad with your other hand to prevent possible hidden cameras from recording your number. If possible, use an ATM at an inside location (less access for criminals to install skimmers). Be careful of ATMs in tourist areas — they are a popular target of skimmers.