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Police provide advice for identifying telephone scams

Annaliese Jackson


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An attempted telephone scam was reported to the Logan Police Department on Jan. 15 — and police say the potential victim knew just what to do.

“According to the complainant,” Capt. Tyson Budge said, “the caller informed her she had a refund coming and was most likely going to try and obtain a bank account number to put it in.”

Luckily, the complainant knew the signs of a scam and did not provide the caller any information.

Budge said the phone scams like this are fairly consistent.

“People do not always report them,” Budge said, “but we get them about every week.”

Utah Division of Consumer Protection director Daniel O'Bannon said there are three common scams — the IRS scam, the lottery scam and the tech support scams.

“Scammers will usually request money be sent to them in a manner difficult to track,” O’Bannon said. “Most commonly, they will request that victims buy various gift cards and then provide the barcodes allowing scammers to use the funds from wherever they happen to be located.”

Budge said some of the scams commonly reported to his department include the computer virus scam and the fake non-profit scam.

“Organizations that will take your money for policeman's fund, animal shelters,” Budge said. “Something that pulls at a heartstring.”

“Anytime someone wants you to pay with an iTunes card, Google Play card or a prepaid credit card,” Budge said, “you should automatically know it is a scam.”

The Utah Department of Commerce website provides more information about telephone scams and how to report them.