GARDAÍ in Letterkenny have made a fresh appeal for people to be vigilant against scams after a man was duped out of €400.
The man was contacted on Facebook by someone who was purporting to be a friend of his.
They requested that he buy amazon gift cards and forward the codes to them in exchange for cash.
The man was unable to buy amazon gift cards but instead bought Apple itune giftcards for the amount of €400.
He sent a photo of the codes on the giftcards to the person conversing with him as he thought it was his friend.
As soon as the codes were sent the Facebook profile was deleted leaving the man at a loss.
While this is not a new scam and has been in operation for a while, gardaí want to make the public aware of it.
“Gift card scams often begin by pressuring victims into buying a gift card. Then, scammers trick their victims into revealing the gift card number and PIN, which the scammers immediately redeem. Gift card scammers often gain their victims’ confidence by pretending to be someone else, such as a government employee, a family member, a romantic interest or a friend. A fake profile is created as it was in this case and contact is made. Gift card fraud is anonymous, nearly impossible to reverse, and gets immediate results. Fraudulent charges on credit cards can be cancelled, but gift card charges can’t. Paying with gift cards is like paying in cash — once it’s gone, it’s gone for good.
“We urge people to be vigilant and should they receive a similar type of request to purchase gift cards, to stop and think. Never provide the code on a giftcard to someone you do not know and trust. Be aware that fake profiles can be created easily.”
Gardaí are urging people to always be ‘scam aware’.
“Never click on links contained in unsolicited text messages. Never act on advice or instruction received during an unsolicited call, text message or social media message. Never provide your personal or financial details, such as PIN numbers, passwords, one time codes. Do not transfer any money.”
Anyone who has been a victim of any type of scam is asked to report the matter to gardaí and notify their bank.
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