March 12, 2024

A Reminder About Scams

Scams usually start with a phone call, email, text, or another form of communication. The person typically claims to be from an agency or organization you know – or one that sounds like it might benefit you, such as the National Sweepstakes Bureau or a lottery.

The person may know your name and address. They may give you their official title or an identification number. No matter how official they seem, you can be confident it’s a scam if the person contacting you:

  • Indicates there is a problem with your benefits.
  • Asks you to pay to receive a prize.
  • Suggests that paying will increase the chance of winning.
  • Requests financial information, such as a bank account or credit card number.
  • Pressures you to act immediately.
  • Tells you to pay using a specific method, such as a gift card or cryptocurrency.

 If this happens, remember that the Social Security Administration, the Internal Revenue Service, Medicare, and your bank do not call, email, or text to ask for money or personal information. They do not demand that you pay immediately, and they do not accept payment by gift card, prepaid debit card, cryptocurrency, or another untraceable form of money transfer.

 When you suspect a scam:

  • Hang up or close the message. Do not respond in any way.
  • Remain calm.
  • Think back over the call. Write down any personal information you may have inadvertently shared.
  • Report the scam. Contact the Federal Trade Commission at You may also want to report the incident to your state’s attorney general or your local consumer protection agency.
  • Share your knowledge. Talk with family, friends, and neighbors about your experience so they know what to look out for.

When you receive a digital message, no matter how official it seems, do not click on any links. Do not give or confirm any personal information, including your name, birth date, phone number, address, email address, place of birth, driver’s license, passport, or Social Security numbers, bank or other account numbers, and PIN numbers.

Being skeptical can keep you safe. Remove yourself from the situation. Do not share information. If you feel anxious and need to confirm that it was a scam, contact the organization using a method provided on their official website.

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AMJ Financial Wealth Management LLC is not affiliated with Triad Advisors, LLC