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Amherst Police warning of banking scam

Senior gets taken for more than $20,000

Published on July 14, 2017

AMHERST – Scammers are at it again and Amherst Police say it’s the elderly who are the targets.

Police are warning of a fraud in which the scammer, claiming to work for a bank, calls victims saying there have been fraudulent purchases using their bank account.
The caller requests people to buy a large amount of iTunes gift cards and asks them to provide the activation numbers on the back of the cards.
Once this is done, the fraudster usually advises that as a result of the help provided, they have caught an individual but will need further cards or bank transfers in order to catch other associates to the crime.
The fraudster promises to reimburse any fees used in catching the thieves even though they have no intentions of doing so.
“We’ve heard of this scam before but now we’re seeing how it’s impacting people here. We had someone in May who lost more than $20,000,” Const. Tom Wood said. “They’re calling saying someone is using your bank account to commit fraud and we kind of know who it is so can you help us catch the bad guys?”
Wood said the fraudsters are targeting the senior population because they are most trusting and even those caught up in the scam are too embarrassed to report it to police.
“Our concern is this will happen again and again,” he said. “We’ve heard of another case out there. Once they get that money, they’ll get more and more.”
Wood said police are asking anyone receives a call similar to this scam to terminate the call immediately.
If you feel you have an issue with your bank card, call your bank directly and do not call any numbers provided by the callers. Caregivers are asked to monitor their loved ones financial activity and make sure that they have not fallen victim to this type of scam.
If you have fallen victim to this scam, please contact the Amherst Police Department at 902-667-7227.