Woman swindled out of $60K in 'Best Buy' scam: Deputies
NBC - 2 WCBD (Charleston, SC)
BEAUFORT COUNTY, S.C. (WCBD) - The Beaufort County Sheriff's Office is warning the public of a recent scam that defrauded a woman of thousands of dollars.
Deputies say the scammed happened in late July with the woman receiving an email from a party she believed came from Best Buy's Geek Squad.
The email read that the woman's protection plan was about to renew and if she wanted to cancel the renewal she would have to contact a number with an area code of 808.
The woman then called the number and spoke with a person identifying himself as "Dave."
The alleged party said a payment had been processed and the woman had to allow him access to her computer and bank accounts through a "Team Viewer" program to get a refund.
After giving the party access to her computer, "the woman stated a pop-up appeared on her screen prompting her to enter the refund amount of $445," deputies said. "Once she did, 'Dave' said she had mistakenly entered $45,000 and he would take care of it" and "an immediate wire transfer of $44,000 was made from her account."
At this point, the woman said the line immediately disconnected.
Deputies say the next day, the woman said her investment portfolio was compromised and 'Dave' contacted her again. During this call, the alleged party threatened to "take all of her money if she didn't send $20,000 to a Michigan address."
The woman was compliant and sent the cash through FedEx overnight. The following Monday, she learned that she fell victim to a scam after consulting her bank.
She lost over $60,000.
Deputies present the following tips for staying protected from scams:
* Always verify contact information independently
* Avoid clicking on links or operating attachments in emails
* Don't believe everything you see or here
* Never allow someone access to your financial accounts
* Resist the pressure to act immediately
Authorities are urging those who believe they have fallen for a scam to report it to local law enforcement.