According to Carmen Million of the Better Business Bureau, scams are on a big increase here in the Lake area. In response the BBB has released a list of the top scams that are being perpetrated around the country.

Here, according to the BBB, are 10 scams that are working around the country and a few things to be aware of in case you are contacted by one of these scammers.


Tax Scam: Basically, the scammer claims to be from the IRS, but you can get out of trouble by sending them money right then. The IRS doesn't work that way and they don't do phone collections.

Debt Collection Scam: The caller claims to be collecting a debt and threatens you with everything short of the death penalty. As with most scams, they offer to let you pay the debt over the phone to stay out of jail. You can't go to jail for a regular outstanding debt.

Sweepstakes/Prizes/Gifts Scam: the caller tells you that you've won some sort of prize and you can claim it if you send them money to cover the cost of getting the prize to you. There's no prize and you should never have to pay to claim a prize.

Tech Support Scam: This is a nasty one. The caller claims to be from a tech company who tells you that they have detected  some sort of virus on your computer. They tell you that they can fix it, if you let them into your computer. If you do this, you could end up with a real virus and an empty bank account.

Government Grant Scam: Congratulations you've been awarded a government grant and if you send them some money, they will see that you get your grant money. Government grants don't work that way. Hang up on them.

Advance Fee Loan Scam: Let's say you go searching for information on how to get a loan. Well, the scammers will call and tell you that they will be more than happy to loan you the money if you just pay a processing fee. You won't get the loan and you can say goodbye to the amount you sent as a processing fee.

Credit Card Scam: This call will come from someone claiming to be with your bank or your credit card company. They will tell you that, since you're such a wonderful customer, you qualify for a lower rate. That's when they ask for your credit card number and they will process everything for you. Once they have your credit card number, you're toast. Your bank and your credit card company already know your card number and they won't ask for it.

Work from Home Scam: Work from home opportunities are a favorite of scammers. they offer fairly good money to sit around the house and do jobs like envelope stuffing and such. Of course, you will be asked to pay for the shipping and handling of the material you'll need to do the job. that's where the hook comes in. Once you've paid that fee, you'll never hear from them again.

Fake Check/Money Order Scam: this is a pretty smart scheme. Let's say you've sold something over the internet or someone is "paying" you for some sort of goods or services. The scammer will send you a check for a lot more than you were charging for the goods or services. When you contact them about the check, they tell you that it's not a problem, just send the amount they overpaid you. Their check, you will find, is no good and they pocket the "overage' and are gone.

Lottery scam: You might get a call or a letter claiming you've won some kind of sweepstakes or lottery, but you have to pay the taxes or fees before you can collect the sweepstakes money. In some cases, they may even send you a check for part of the "prize." Good luck cashing the check and if you pay the "taxes and fees" you can say goodbye to that money.

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