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CSPD warns of increase in phone scams

Posted at 12:30 PM, Oct 12, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-12 14:30:21-04

COLORADO SPRINGS – A warning from Colorado Springs Police that scammers are working extra hard trying to trick people out of their money across the city through a variety of phone scams.

The scams are targeting the senior community as well. Officers say it can be a terrifying experience because the scammers often threaten family members safety as a way to make you pay.

According to police the most prevalent scams they have seen recently are IRS scams, child/grandchild scam, kidnapping scam and the Social Security scam.

Here’s a quick break down of each one:

  • IRS Scams – This involves a scammer who pretends to be an agent of the IRS, who tells you they have a warrant for your arrest unless you pay a certain amount of money.
  • Child/Grandchild Scam – This is when a scammer pretends to be a law enforcement official, and they say that your child/ grandchild has been arrested and won’t be released until you pay them money.
  • Kidnapping Scam – This is a terrifying scam where the scammer tells you he has kidnapped your child or family member, and that you need to make payment for their release.
  • Social Security Scam– caller states the person’s Social Security number was used to rent a car and the vehicle has been found with blood and drugs inside.

Police say the scammers behave like high-pressure salesmen and that they want you to be frightened into making a bad decision.

When you receive a phone call where you feel as though someone is pressuring you to pay money, police say take some time and do the following:

  • Call the family member who the scammer told you was kidnapped or arrested directly. Most times if you simply call the family member they can answer and let you know they are fine.
  • Ask a family member or loved one if it seems like a scam.
  • Call CSPD at 444-7000 and talk to an officer about your situation.

Another sign that the person on the phone is involved in a scam is how they are asking for money. Most scammers tell the person to wire money outside of the U.S. or to send a pre-paid Visa or Green Dot card from a local store. CSPD says legit businesses do not require these methods of payment.