BLACKSBURG, S.C. (WSPA) – ‘Tis the season to be scammed and one Upstate police department has a warning we all need to hear.
The Blacksburg Police Department encourages everyone to always be on alert for scams, but especially this time of year.
They said you can receive scams through mail, text messages, emails and calls, and no one is immune, even some of their officers have gotten them.
“It’s really common, right here around Christmas, for people to come up with ways to try and get you to send them money,” said Officer Shahna Blanton.
Blanton, with Blacksburg Police, said people tried to scam her.
“I got a text message that said a package of mine wasn’t able to be delivered and to click on a link,” she said.
She was expecting a package and said the text looked legitimate, but it said she needed to pay for a redelivery.
“Which is not a thing. So, you know, obviously, I backed out of all that and closed it out,” said Officer Blanton. “But that’s so common right here around Christmas, we get it all the time.”
Her Lieutenant and his wife also received scams via text messages.
“His work phone, his personal phone and his wife’s phone all got the same text message,” said Officer Blanton.
She said their reports for scams always go up during the holidays.
“We all are ordering stuff online, we’re all getting emails with shipping updates and bank account updates,” she said. “I mean, it’s just easy to send out a scam and see who bites.”
If you receive your piece of mail, a text message, phone call or email that looks too generic, Officer Blanton suggested it’s probably a scam.
“If it’s legitimate, it’ll have the company logo, it’ll have your account number, it’ll have your name, it’ll have identifying information that you can compare,” said the Officer.
She said there are ways you can verify it’s the actual company reaching out to you.
“If who is asking for the money is legitimate, you can always go to Google or your bill for that account. And there’s always a phone number or a customer service number listed, and you can call that and check with them,” she said.
Officer Blanton wants to warn people to pay attention to any kind of notification they get. If you aren’t sure whether or not you’re being scammed, Officer Blanton said to call customer service. You can also go to the Blacksburg Police Department if you need help.
Officer Blanton said this warning is part of her Seasonal Safety Tips, some more are:
- Pay attention when you’re in stores.
- If you’re uncomfortable, you can always call law enforcement or ask an employee to walk you to your car.
- If you are struggling with a mental health crisis, call 9-8-8.