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Report scammers and protect your information

Staff Report • Feb 22, 2013 at 8:48 AM

We were pleased to hear from a reader in Johnson City this week who knew exactly what to do when she was called by a scammer looking to steal her money and her vital personal information. She hung up.

The reader said she had taken heed of an item she saw in the Press earlier this month from the Unicoi County Sheriff’s Department warning local residents to be on the lookout for con artists calling people to inform them they are Publishers Clearing House winners. She knew something was amiss when the caller began asking for personal information, such as her Social Security number. And she was certain writing a check for $300 and sending it to the caller would be a mistake.

Our alert reader was smart. That’s why she didn’t fall prey to a scam that robs too many Americans of their private financial information and personal identification.

Don’t be taken in by such emails or phone calls. Never give out your personal information over the phone or on the Internet unless you have initiated the contact.

Hang up on the scammer and report the call to your local law enforcement agency.

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