“He says, well you were put into a drawing and you got second place and you won $550,000,” says Langlais, who started to get suspicious at that point.
The target of past scams, Langlais started taking notes, but what he was saying seemed somewhat legitimate.
“He had my phone number, my address, my name, my city — you know, the whole bit,” says Langlais. “Then he said he would send it — it was from the Citi Bank of America, the check.”
Langlais adds, “Then he gave me the number of the check and he also said it was coming through FedEx and he gave me the claim number.”
Tuesday, a second call came in. This time, from a man claiming to be a member of Homeland Security. He told her, if she wanted to collect her winnings, she needed to pay up.
“I was supposed to pay them from the back end and they wanted $2,000-plus,” says Langlais. “I laughed and I told them, ‘Send it back!’”
A member of the Homeland Security team in Worcester says this scam is becoming quite frequent and, unfortunately, there are some people who fall victim.
Our calls to the scammer went unanswered.
“They’re targeting the elderly who don’t have enough as it is,” says Langlais. “And they’re targeting other people, I don’t care if they have it or not, it’s fraud!”
Police say there are several reg flags to watch out for:
1. Did you sign up for a contest? It’s pretty rare for someone to just give you money, especially if you never lifted a finger.
2. You should never have to pay money to get money.
3. Never disclose any information about your bank account.
If you’re targeted in this scam, you’re urged to contact the Dept. of Homeland Security or your local police department.