Practically everyone has been a victim.
“Some from the IRS wanting credit card numbers,” says Buddy Eagle.
“These people called me and said, sir, you have to have $1500 to resolve this issue or we’ll have a sheriff waiting at your house,” says Tony Gray.
But when it comes to reporting a scam, do you know who to call?
“Uh, not really,” says Johnson.
“Uhh, probably the police department,” says Rogers.
Not quite. It’s a tricky question and everyone thinks they know the answer.
The first person you should contact is the actual agency the scammer pretended to be with. Like if you get a call from someone saying they’re with the power company, contact Alabama Power.
“We see a rash of these for awhile and then it seems scammers go on to something else and then they tend to come back,” says Beth Thomas with Alabama Power.
The next step—report it to the feds.
“Contact the Federal Trade Commission. FTC.gov is the nationwide repository of scam information, says Detective Laura Soulier with the Mobile County Sheriff’s Office.
One in ten people fall victim to scams each year and lose billions of dollars in the process. But the fact is, even if you report them, there’s no guarantee you’ll get your money back.
“Usually never. Because of the fact that they use items like money wires or the Green Dot prepaid visa cards that are virtually untraceable,” says Soulier.
You could report to the local authorities, but because these scammers are usually overseas, they are out of our jurisdiction.
Visit https://www.ftc.gov/ for the Federal Trade Commission or The FBI’s Internet Crime Division at http://www.ic3.gov/default.aspx.