LAUREL COUNTY, Ky. —
Chief Walker and the police department offered several tips to avoid scams such as these at any time of year:
• Be watchful of emails and messages on social media websites asking for your personal information. If you don’t know the sender, don’t open the message.
• Be wary of sweepstakes that say “you’re a guaranteed winner” but need you to make a contribution. According to Walker, “By law, you should never have to make a donation to be eligible to win a sweepstakes.”
• If someone sends you a check and asks you to cash it and then send them back half of it, don’t do it. House said this is a common scam that forces victims to actually commit theft by deception, a felony, by cashing a fictitious check.
• Don’t ever keep personal belongings in your car and in open sight when you are not in it. If going to a store or home for the night, either bring your things with you or lock them in the trunk.
• Keep purses and wallets in easy to control places. Don’t leave them in your shopping cart. Keep them on your body where you can see them at all times.
“It’s really sad,” Walker said. “We have to remind people of this every year. It’s because people around here are generally good people. They trust each other and want to see the best of their neighbors. Unfortunately, the bad guys know that and take advantage of it.”
For more information or if you believe you have become the victim of a scam, contact the London Police Department at (606) 878-7004.