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Investigation Phone Call Scam

How the scam works:

(with video below) This fraudulent activity is targeted at stores and restaurant owners, victims being the everyday customers who paid by credit card. How does the scam work? Let's take a look.

Watch the video below to see a description of the scam:

Police Investigation Scam Video

Scammers call local stores falsely identifying themselves as police officers conducting a fraud investigation. After painting a scenario nicely crafted, they need the names and phone numbers of customers that made large purchases over the past few hours. Let's assume you are one of them, as you just bought something worth $400 at a local store.

Once customer information is exchanged, the scammers proceed to call you (and the rest of the customers), except now they identify themselves as the shop they received the information from! During this phone call, they state the order did not go through due to the credit card system going down, so they need your credit card number again to process the transaction.

Needless to point out, once you give the credit card over the phone it will be maxed out in no time.

 

How to avoid:

If you get such a phone call, do not give personal information over the phone, whether you are a store clerk or an actual customer. If you are not entirely convinced the transaction didn't go through, tell the caller to give you a few minutes, hang up, and call the actual store by looking up their real phone number. If you are a store owner, instruct your staff not to give credit card numbers over the phone. Police officers investigate cases by going to the actual store in person.

How to report:

Make your family and friends aware of this scam by sharing it on social media using the buttons provided. You can also officially report the scammers to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) using the link below:

Report To The FTC Here

 

How to protect yourself more:

If you want to be the first to find out the most notorious scams every week, feel free to subscribe to the Scam Detector newsletter here. You'll receive periodical emails and we promise not to spam. Last but not least, use the Comments section below to expose other scammers.

 

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