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How a $2 scam can hit your bank account where it hurts

Posted at 12:00 PM, Nov 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-11-08 19:36:19-05

TULSA, Okla. — "If it sounds too good to be true..."

How many times have you heard that scam? 2News Problem Solvers say crooks keep pouncing on would-be victims until they find one.

If only she had recalled those words her father had instilled in her all those years ago when Carijean was only a child. words meant to be a lifelong lesson.

"I learned don't be gullible, anything free is not free, my daddy used to tell me that."

Recently, though, Carijean says she was fooled, when a postcard arrived in her mailbox.

Final notice it says, call now to get a free $100 voucher to be spent anyway she wished.

"They were trying to sell me magazines and I said I don't want any magazines, I just want the voucher."

But they would still send her that voucher, Carijean says, all she had to do was pay a $1.95 processing fee with a checking account or credit card.

A good deal, Carijean thought.

On disability, she says every dime counts, every nickel, even every penny.

For food, for toiletries, especially for rent.

"I pay almost $600 a month, then I get $700 a month, so that doesn't leave me very much."

The $100 voucher, though, never arrived.

Carijean says every time she called, they charged her again, at least five times, but still, no voucher.

"Every time I called, they asked for my card number, the expiration date, and security code. I would give it to them against my better judgment."

Eventually, Carijean feared she could lose everything, now that someone had some of her financial and personal information.

"I'm worried they could take my rent, they could take my whole check."

And when Carijean said she was going to report the situation, "they said you don't need to call anybody and laughed in my face."

Experts say would be scammers sometimes charge a small amount to a victim's credit card, testing the account, checking to see if that charge goes through.

If it does, they'll hit the account with a much larger charge a little later.

But Carijean contacted the Problem Solvers before that could happen.

She closed that account and opened a new one.

Now, Carijean feels it's her duty to warn others, she says, her spiritual duty.

"I was reading my Bible, I was reading my Bible, and I kept this in my Bible, and something said call Channel 2, call Channel 2."

And Carijean's message is simple, free is never free, no matter what a suspicious offer, may promise.

"Don't do it, don't do it, don't do it."

Words of warning, as those words from her father, from decades-long ago, once again echo, loud and clear.

And while a victim can dispute charges if a credit card is involved, experts recommend the quick action Carijean took, by closing the account and opening a new one.

Contact the Problem Solvers:

  • 918-748-1502
  • problemsolvers@kjrh.com

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