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Manassas City Police alerted to attempted fraud via telephone and email

Manassas City Police Department
Crime Report
March 22, 2017

Attempted Fraud
On March 20, 2017, Manassas City Police met with a citizen from the 8600 block of Weems Rd for a report of an attempted fraud.  The victim told police she received an email from a company claiming to be a collection agency.  The victim reported the email stated she owed a large amount sum of money in overdue payments.  The victim immediately realized the email was a scam and contacted police.

Crime Prevention Tip:  Avoiding Fraud at Any Cost
Fraud is the deliberate deception of a victim with the promise of goods, services or other benefits that are non-existent, never intended to be provided, or grossly misrepresented. The number of internet fraud and scams is only limited to a criminal’s imagination. Follow these tips to avoid becoming a victim of fraud:

Never pay fees or a deposit upfront for something that would not normally have significant upfront costs, such as a sweepstakes. If a deal seems too good to be true, it most likely is.

These amazing promises of goods, services or other offers are oftentimes sent out via e-mail. Pay no attention to them and delete them immediately.

Never give out personal information such as your social security number or credit card numbers on unprotected internet sites. Make sure the website is protected before giving out personal information.

If you are giving this type of information to a company for the first time, do your research on the business beforehand. Read reviews on the company and make sure it is a company that can be trusted. The Better Business Bureau is a great resource that provides consumers with useful information on businesses and their ratings. Visit the Better Business Bureau online.

If you decide to meet someone in person to sell or buy an item from an online advertisement, make sure you have a friend or family member accompany you and communicate with others about your whereabouts. If possible, meet in a well-populated, safe location such as a restaurant or busy area of town.

Attempted Fraud
On March 17, 2017, Manassas City Police responded to the 8700 block of Quarry Rd for a report of an attempted fraud.  The victim told police she received a phone call from a suspicious person who threated to harm her daughter if she did not send him money.  The victim was immediately able to make contact with her daughter via phone.  The victim’s daughter stated she was safe and unharmed.

Crime Prevention Tip:  Don’t Fall Victim to Telephone Scams
It is important to remember that anyone can be a victim of telephone fraud. However, criminals typically target senior citizens with most phone scams. Why?

First, criminals perceive that seniors have a large source of income born out of savings, pensions, social security income and ownership of a home.

Second, no matter what their financial status, seniors are often tempted by financial scams due to the fear that they will outlive their savings.

Finally, seniors are often available at home during the day to answer the phone or door, and are unlikely to hang up on a scam artist – even if they suspect fraud. However, no matter what your age, you CAN protect yourself from this type of crime.

• Never give your information to persons who state they are from your bank or credit card company. If you have concerns or questions about your account, contact your financial institution directly.

• If you think a call may be fraudulent, HANG UP! The phone is yours – you decide to whom you would like to speak. If you would rather not hang up on someone, tell the caller you will have a family member speak to him or her instead.

• Remember, if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is!

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