Maple Grove Scam Prevention Expert Urges Vigilance Amid Rising Sophistication
In the face of increasingly sophisticated scams, a scam prevention expert is sounding the alarm and urging residents to stay vigilant.
Todd Strege, Maple Grove Community Outreach Specialist, provides essential insights to help protect the local community from falling victim to fraudulent schemes.
“They’ve gotten a lot more sophisticated,” Strege cautions, highlighting the evolving nature of scams.
Contrary to popular belief, he dispels the notion that scams are confined to neighboring states or cities.
“A lot of the scams that we see nationwide originate from outside the country,” said Strege.
He also highlights the prevalent use of gift cards in scams.
“Gift cards are the number one red flag,” said Strege, who urges the public never to comply with requests for payment in the form of gift cards, especially when dealing with government agencies or police departments.
In the unfortunate event of a monetary loss due to a scam, Strege encourages victims to take immediate action by filing a police report.
“It is a theft and something that we would like to investigate and check into further,” states Strege, who adds that filling a report also provide the victim with valuable resources and guidance on how to recover and move forward.
Strege stresses that many scams have their origins overseas and that once the money is gone, it is often impossible to recover.
Scammers Stress Secrecy and Urgency
“Scammers always operate in the way of secrecy,” said Strege, who noted that scammers frequently stress urgency, compelling victims to make quick decisions while discouraging them from seeking advice from friends or family members.
To empower individuals to protect themselves, Strege offers some practical advice like utilizing caller ID to screen unfamiliar calls.
Seniors, who are often prime targets, may receive numerous unknown calls daily. Strege advises them to ignore it and block the number, especially if they can confirm that the caller is not associated with any legitimate entity they work with.
Despite the embarrassment that often accompanies falling victim to a scam, Strege encourages the community to report such incidents.
For more information on recent scams and how to make a report if you a victim, visit the city of Maple Grove’s website.