Letter to the Editor: Phone Scam Warning

Los Alamos

We received a phone call on our home line indicating we had won a significant amount of money. It would take $150 submitted through a wire transfer through Western Union to release the funds to us. An obvious scam! We played along for a little while … “We don’t live near a Western Union” … “Well, go to Walmart or CVS Pharmacy. They do money transfers.” “We don’t live near either of those. And you should know where we live since you called us.”

They knew the address but thought it was in Minnesota (MN rather than NM!) The caller continued to badger us to get to Walmart. We replied “you are an obvious scam!” The caller replied in a clear Caribbean accent “You are a bad business woman since you could have $840,000 for just $150!”
If it seems too good to be true, it is! Do an online search and you see lots of similar scams especially scams claiming several thousand dollar guaranteed loans for $150, all using Western Union or other money transfer facilities as the conduit. Why? Because Western Union international wire transfers can not be reversed and are not traceable! The local constabulary has been notified.