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Live 5 Scambusters: Mt. Pleasant police hope to prevent scams with new signs

Updated: Apr. 28, 2021 at 5:01 PM EDT
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MOUNT PLEASANT, S.C. (WCSC) - The Mount Pleasant Police Department is taking a preventative stance against a certain type of scam.

Town employees placed more than a dozen small signs at retail stores, warning people about gift card scams.

“Rather than try to spin our wheels and investigate a crime that’s almost impossible to solve, we try to do something from a prevention measure,” Mount Pleasant Police Department Inspector Don Calabrese said.

The signs warn people about the existence of such scams including common threats like the possibility of arrest, or a family member in danger. Imposters will urgently demand payment through gift cards.

“If somebody is going up to a customer service desk and trying to buy gift cards as payment, they’ll see this sign and maybe in the back of their head, something will click to know that the IRS isn’t going to ask for that, the police department isn’t going to ask that,” Inspector Calabrese said.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, people victimized by gift card scammers since 2018 have lost a median average of $840.20.

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