Archived Story

Scams prey on senior citizens

Published 10:04pm Wednesday, April 18, 2012

DOWAGIAC — Tamara, 68, seldom signs up for things online, but, last week after registering with Publishers Clearing House, she began receiving calls that “I won a check.”
“That’s when the calls started. Within a 24-hour period, I received three scam calls wanting me to pay to receive my delivery of a check. The callers sounded foreign. By the third call, I was really irritated.”
Tamara, who did not file a police report and prefers not to use her last name, just wants other seniors to beware because her aunt and uncle fell for such a pitch and it wiped them out financially.
She said one call requested $299 and the other $350 to claim her prize.
“The third one never got that far. I cut them off,” she said Monday. “Just because I’m a senior citizen doesn’t mean I’m stupid or greedy. You don’t get something for nothing. You have to work for it.”
Publishers Clearing House is a New York-based direct-marketing company that offers discounted magazine subscriptions and household merchandise to consumers with the chance to enter ongoing sweepstakes.
A spokeswoman for the Dowagiac Police Department, Patty Klug, said there is a “constant” stream of two to three scam complaints a week with frequent “new twists.”
Klug recalls one come-on that replicated Reader’s Digest’s logo almost accurately to create a facade of authenticity.
Klug said one of those twists is getting “checks” into the hands of the gullible because it makes it “harder to think it can’t be real.”

By using this website’s user-contribution features, including comments, photo galleries, or any other feature, you agree to abide by the terms of use. Please read this agreement in its entirety because it contains useful information that will help you better understand the rules and general "good manners" that are expected when contributing content to this website.

Editor's Picks

torn