Upshur County sheriff warns of new twist on old fraud scheme

Upshur County sheriff warns of new twist on old fraud scheme
Published: Apr. 5, 2023 at 6:25 PM CDT|Updated: Apr. 5, 2023 at 10:35 PM CDT
Email This Link
Share on Pinterest
Share on LinkedIn

UPSHUR COUNTY, Texas (KLTV) - An East Texas sheriff’s office has issued warning about new, well organized and rehearsed ‘scam’; one that has already victimized a number of people.

Upshur County Sheriff Larry Webb said it started in his county about three months ago.

“It’s an elaborate scheme. What they wind up doing is, they keep them on the phone and tell them there’s some kind of investigation going on that involves their account. They’re wanting them to move their money into a different account,” Webb said.

Well rehearsed and organized, the callers come off as people known in the community.

“They’ve been real convincing. They’ll identify themselves as either a member of the government or law enforcement agency. Or a member of their local bank,” Webb said.

The new twist is when the fraudsters are asking the person to move their money.

“These two cases here, they have specifically asked them to move their money to a bitcoin account,” said Webb.

Sadly, it has worked.

“Unfortunately, I’ve had two of those reports here and they’ve been for a substantial amount of money. Once you put that money into the account, it’s gone. We’re looking at over a million dollars,” said Webb.

Upshur County investigators have gotten information from the victims, but as you might expect.

“We just start hitting brick walls, because they just disappear. The phone numbers don’t work anymore. The names are bogus names,” Webb said.

The sheriff said if it sounds shady, it probably is.

“Never give out your information to anybody, by no means take any of that money out of your account,” he said.

Sheriff Webb said the red flag is the fraudulent callers insist that, because an investigation is ongoing, the subject is not to contact anyone else regarding their conversation, and they will continue to keep you on the phone until you’ve provided the requested information.