The Fayette Tribune, Oak Hill, W.Va.

Local News

July 10, 2013

Morrisey: Beware of social media scams

CHARLESTON — The old adage that if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is, has been revived in the modern arena of social media networks.

Specifically, scams are abundant on such sites as Facebook, touting “free money” and other sweet deals, then demand that anyone applying for them forward personal information.

“Any offer that seems too good to be true, typically is,” Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said Thursday, repeating the familiar old warning.

Morrisey said his office has been called often of late by residents wanting to know if messages that surfaced on the network accounts are for real.

At times, such offers appeared to have been forwarded by friends of acquaintances, showing how they came into huge sums of money from a federal agent representing an empowerment program, the attorney general said.

As long as the reader is willing to put up a “shipping fee” ranging from $1,000 to $3,000, which is sought in a wire transfer service, the payoff can run from $50,000 to $150,000 in cash — or so one is told.

“These types of scams are very convincing because they start with a message that appears to come from a social media friend, and they involve conversations back and forth through ongoing messages,” Morrisey said.

Consumers need to be skeptical about any offer for “free money” that just appears out of nowhere provided the reader pays an upfront fee to stake a claim to “winnings,” he warned.

A red flag should go up immediately when such offers use pseudonyms rather than actual names.

Moreover, he said, one should never share personal information, including date of birth, bank account and Social Security numbers, with callers or those who post on social media.

“As technology changes, so do the ways scammers try to con people out of their money,” Morrisey said. “West Virginia citizens need to be vigilant and always wary of anything, even messages on social media that offer windfalls of cash and prizes.”

Morrisey invited anyone who feels victimized by such scams to call his Consumer Protection Division at 1-800-368-8808.

— E-mail: mannix@register-herald.com

1
Text Only
Local News
  • maurices Fostering Self-Esteem

    The local Maurices is involved in a project aimed at making the school transition a little easier this fall for foster children in the area.

    July 21, 2014 1 Photo

  • Children’s Health and Safety Fair scheduled for August 1

    Montgomery General Hospital and Dr. Traci Acklin have announced that the 2014 Children’s Health and Safety Fair will be held on Friday, Aug. 1 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at the hospital.

    July 21, 2014

  • Theater to hold auditions

    Open auditions are set for Tuesday and Thursday at the Historic Fayette Theater for the comedy/drama “Belongings”. Auditions will be held at the theater in Fayetteville at 7 p.m. each evening.

    July 21, 2014

  • asb carver 25 years and counting

    July 18, 2014 1 Photo

  • Taylor Made Free concert series

    The next free public concert in the Lively Family Amphitheater Summer Concert Series is a performance Saturday at 6 p.m. by popular band Taylor Made.

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • Energy Express open house set

    Energy Express, an award-winning summer reading program serving 35+ children in Fayette County, will host a free open house for members of the Beards Fork SALS community. The event takes place on Thursday, July 24, at 10 a.m. to 12 p.m.

    July 17, 2014

  • rhody1.jpg Stages of life

    July 14, 2014 3 Photos

  • thurmond depot.jpg Explore town’s rail heritage

    Discover what life was like in one of the New River Gorge’s most renowned towns as you join National Park Service rangers and Operation Lifesaver on Saturday, July 19 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. to explore the historic railroad town of Thurmond.

    July 14, 2014 1 Photo

  • apt bldg1.jpg Demolition and disposal

    July 10, 2014 3 Photos

  • contrite spirit.jpg Murder, buried treasure, ghosts on stage at HFT

    This July will have you seeing spirits, but please don’t fear. Come and find out what the mystery is all about at the Historic Fayette Theater, as Patsy Shrewsbury, in her directorial debut, brings the light-hearted play, “The Contrite Spirit,” to the stage July 11-12, 18-19, 25-26 at 8 p.m. and July 27 at 2 p.m.

    July 10, 2014 1 Photo