This newsletter is just being sent as a brief reminder that citizens of Baxter County are continuing to be targeted by those seeking to commit financial crimes and identity theft crimes against them. Just within the past week the Sheriff’s Office has taken several complaints from people who have received letters and documents in their regular mail and email inboxes from bogus organizations seeking their involvement in the distribution of large fraudulent cash awards or money settlements.
In particular, some of these involve notifications of large cash prizes from random drawings and ask the “winner” to complete verification forms containing their personal information, and asking them to pay processing or distribution fees so they can be paid these cash prizes. Included among these mailings are letters and documents claiming to be from the following:
MAGIC MONEY CONTEST
Syosset, New York
BECKETT & BROWN
Las Vegas, Nevada
Los Angeles, California
Although we have said so many times before, members of the public are strongly advised to not give any personal identifying information to any unknown or potentially fraudulent source, either by filling out “verification” forms, by phone, or by email reply. Most of the organizations and the people involved in these scams are from out of state, or even out of the country. Members of the public may have little recourse or opportunity to recover their damages if they participate in these scams or give out their personal information. The potential for monetary loss to the individual is high.
Any mailers that are turned over to us are sent to the Arkansas Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Office in Little Rock. A great deal of useful consumer protection and identity theft information is available on the Attorney General’s web site at www.arkansasag.gov
Any citizen who believes he or she is the victim of an identity theft or fraudulent monetary transaction is encouraged to report it to the Sheriff’s Office. We will be happy to assist in any way that we possibly can.
Capt. Jeff Lewis,
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