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Tue, March 31

Scam warning: Scammers promising services for COVID-19 relief

The Prescott Valley Police Department has recently received an increase in reports of suspects calling Prescott Valley citizens and posing as agents of various government agencies and offering services for COVID-19 relief. (Courier, file)

The Prescott Valley Police Department has recently received an increase in reports of suspects calling Prescott Valley citizens and posing as agents of various government agencies and offering services for COVID-19 relief. (Courier, file)

The Prescott Valley Police Department has recently received an increase in reports of suspects calling Prescott Valley citizens and posing as agents of various government agencies and offering services for COVID-19 relief. Government agencies will not call you and ask you for your banking information. Many of our citizens find themselves in financial distress due to COVID-19 issues. Scammers are taking this opportunity to capitalize on the desperate situations of our citizens who need help in these uncertain times. The Prescott Valley Police Department is committed to providing excellent service for our citizens in spite of the current challenges. Community Service Officers are available Monday to Friday 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. by telephone to answer any questions.

To protect yourself from scammers, it is important to remember the following:

When in doubt, ask. If you are not sure if the caller or sender was real, look up the phone number for the individual or agency in your phonebook or on the agency’s or company’s official website. Call that number yourself and check to see if what you were told by the caller is accurate.

Caller ID is easily spoofed. Scammers are pros at tricking Caller ID systems into showing the caller information they want it to show. Just because the Caller ID says “National Consumers League” or “APS,” does not guarantee that the person on the other end is affiliated with that organization.

Be careful of email senders who appear to be legit. Scammers can spoof the “from” address of emails and have been known to run imposter scams over email. If you receive an email from someone demanding money right away, it’s probably a scam. Instead of replying, simply delete the email. Do not click on any links or attachments—they could contain malware that will infect your computer and steal your personal information.

If asked for payment with a wire transfer, cash-reload card, or gift card—it’s a scam. These are all ways that scammers love to be paid because it is very difficult to track. No reputable business will want to be paid with gift cards.

Police officers would prefer to investigate the reported suspicious activities than respond to a report that you have been defrauded. Protection from criminal activity is as much the responsibility of citizens as it is the police department. Please report any unusual activity or suspicious phone calls to police to prevent future fraudulent activities. As always, if you see something, say something.

Prescott Valley Police Department can be contacted at 928-772-9267 for non-emergencies, 911 for emergencies.

Information provided by the Prescott Valley Police Department.

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