By MARY RAINWATER
More than just the season to be jolly, it's also the season for scammers to take advantage of residents — particularly the elderly — with mail and telephone schemes.
Anderson County Sheriff Greg Taylor issued a warning to local residents regarding the latest scam — a letter being sent out as being from “Publisher's Clearing House,” informing the recipient that they have won $1 million and need to claim their prize.
“A woman from Montalba brought a letter in to us,” Taylor explained. “It does not ask for money until the recipient calls to claim their prize. They wanted $40,000 in order for her to receive the money.
The woman was poised to send the money off, the sheriff said, but the payment was halted by her local bank due to its suspicious nature. Unfortunately, the victim already had given “a bunch” of identifying information and will have to take action to protect from identity theft.
“If you have to send money to get money, you did not win any money,” Taylor said. “I commend the bank for halting the payment and protecting its customer.”
Scammers, the sheriff noted, up their game during the holiday season, targeting the charitable spirit of residents as well as the elderly.
“People are just more vulnerable this time of year,” Taylor said. “I just want to caution people again to be aware of these scams (and not fall prey to them).”