Two people lost money to unrelated scams last week. Authorities are investigating both incidents and want to warn others not to fall victim to deals that seen too good to be true.
A 61 year-old Cleveland resident said he received a phone call on Oct. 1st from a man named Michael who claimed he was an employee of AT&T. Michael claimed to be offering a new promotion where the victim could receive a free AT&T cell phone and numerous free gift cards if he provided $1,690 in eBay gift cards. The victim immediately obtained the eBay gift cards and provided the card numbers to the caller. Two days later, Michael called back claiming the original payment failed to go through and a second $1,690 was needed. Unfortunately, the victim purchased an additional $1,690 in eBay gift cards. Later, Michael called again claiming the second payment also didn’t go through and needed a third payment of $1,690.
The victim refused to send in a third payment and contacted AT&T. He learned the calls he had been receiving were not from AT&T and that he had been scammed out of $3,380.
In a second unrelated incident, a 53 year-old disabled Clayton woman was scammed out of $500. The victim said she was on Facebook and saw an ad to be a transcriber. She responded to the ad and was told she was hired. To get started in the job she was told to send in $500 in eBay gift cards to pay for materials for the position. When she did the scammer said an additional $960 was needed to pay for more supplies. The victim realized she had been scammed and refused to pay more money. However she still lost the $500.
Both incidents are under investigation by the Johnston County Sheriff’s Office.