|Published:||Jun 24, 2010 2:54 PM EDT|
|Updated:||Jun 23, 2010 7:53 PM EDT|
FORT MYERS, Fla-- Call for Action takes you through some of the new ways that scam artists are preying on you through e-mail.
One scam is a twist on the Nigerian scam-- where someone in a foreign country promises to send you money if you just send them some money first. The new twist: someone is now offering to help you get your money back.
We showed the e-mail to Stacey Payne with the Lee County Sheriff's Office fraud unit.
"Reading it, the person says I'm from the United States. I've lost money to these people. Now I have a way to get my money back. I've got my money back and I can help you get your money back too," said Payne.
But don't be fooled.
Payne tells us, "Your money's gone."
There are also other red flags that Payne points out.
"Number one: she says she's a U.S. citizen but her grammar is way off. She's really not telling you what she's doing or how she's receiving her money back. She's just saying, 'I can help'," Payne explains. "She won't give her phone number. She claims there's a medical reason why she can't talk over the phone, so she will e-mail you."
Payne went on to say that most con artists realize that once they start speaking to you, you're going to realize that they're not a U.S. citizen and that they're not from here.
She pointed out something else, "The other thing is she has two different addresses. One she sends e-mail to and one she wants you, her potential victim, to send e-mail to so right there we need to realize that this is a scam."
A viewer also warned us about another scam-- targeting renters. Criminals are now of posing as homeowners, advertising the home as being for rent. Payne told us do your research and beware of scam artists targeting renters.
"All this information is public. You can go on the website, the appraiser's site and get addresses of the homes and all the information on when it was built-- all the information that an owner would know," Payne explains.
Clue to look for on this scam:
* Often they say they are in Africa or they are missionaries overseas and need to rent the home. BEWARE: most people who own property and live overseas hire rental agents to help the process.
* They then ask you to send money and they'll send you the keys to the home. BEWARE: you should never have to send money just to LOOK at a home.
Bottom line-- if you don't recognize the address on the e-mail DELETE IT.
Anyone asking for money should raise a red flag.
And if you have any questions call the Lee County Sheriff's Office Fraud Hotline at 239-477-1242.