Another scam that is going around the area is one in which family members are either being told that their relative needs bail money or their relative has been kidnapped and the caller either asks for Green Dot money cards or to wire funds through Western Union. Police said one victim was taken for over $5,000 when the caller said his nephew was in jail and money was needed for his bail.
Pistone said any citizens who are contacted about winning sweepstakes or grants that require fees to be paid, especially through Green Dot cards or Western Union, should be considered highly suspect.
“The same goes for threats of utilities being threatened with turn-offs that are requiring immediate payment through Green Dot cards or Western Union,” he said.
According to the FBI, Green Dot MoneyPak cards are reloadable and available at most retail outlets throughout the country and, like money wire transfers, are just as untraceable. These cards are not associated with any bank, meaning that the money is in the card. Users of these Green Dot MoneyPak cards are reminded to never give anyone those numbers associated with those cards in that doing so gives them instant access to the money on those cards.