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A Red Flag That You May Be Getting Scammed: They Want Payment Through a Gift Card

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Gift cards are a great way to give a gift. But did you know they are also a scammer’s favorite way to steal money? According to the FTC’s new Data Spotlight, more scammers are demanding payment with a gift card than ever before — a whopping 270 percent increase since 2015. — This article is from the Federal Trade Commission’s Consumer Information blog. The author, Cristina Miranda, works in the FTC Division of Consumer and Business Education.

Police: Beware the ‘Publishers Clearing House’ Scam — They’re Taking, Not Giving Money

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Here’s how a certain scam works that’s been offered to people in Darien, as described by a town police announcement on Thursday. Remember, you can’t lose if you don’t play:

The Darien Police Department would like to inform the public about a mail-scam that has been occurring in town. The potential victim is sent what appears to be documentation that they have won a substantial amount of money in the “Publishers Clearing House” sweepstakes. A check is included, and the recipient is instructed to contact the “claim manager” prior to cashing the check and warned not to contact anyone in regards to the prize. The amount the check is made out for is substantially higher than the amount the recipients are supposed to have won.

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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.