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Stow Target employees thwart gift card scam targeting elderly couple

Good work by these employees!
Credit: ASSOCIATED PRESS

STOW, Ohio — Stow police are praising a pair of Target store employees for helping an elderly couple avoid losing thousands of dollars in a gift card scam.

According to police, employees Amy Waffen and Alyssa Denson noticed an elderly couple buying $2,000 in gift cards after ending a phone call as they walked into the store. Police say the couple had also purchased $5,000 in gift cards at another Target store less than an hour before that.

The Target employees alerted police and voided the transaction to prevent the elderly couple from losing money. Additional investigation by police revealed the couple had been victims of a scam.

Police issued the following tips and reminders to avoid being a scam victim:

  • Demanding payment for "delinquent" accounts, IRS taxes and utilities by asking you to purchase gift cards for payment.
  • Someone trying to scare you (threatening jail time for you or a family member if you do not pay).
  • A money request or phone call coming from someone you don't know or have never met in person.
  • Something sounds too good to be true (i.e.; winning the lottery, inheritance, being offered a reward for a large sum of money).
  • Being asked to buy something in advance by sending a wire transfer or being pressured to buy something quickly before you can discuss the matter with a family member.
  • Being asked personal information such as social security number, bank account numbers, logiin IDs and passwords.

 

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