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June 15, 2010 > Fraudulent money scams

Fraudulent money scams

Submitted By Sgt. Daryl Sequeira, Milpitas PD

Milpitas Police Department is warning citizens about fraudulent money scams involving personal banking information. In a recent scam, a potential victim received a call from an unknown male claiming to be a representative of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The subject stated he was calling the potential victim regarding a grant she had applied for. The victim initially believed the subject because she had applied for financial assistance. The subject then requested her bank account information over the phone. After refusing to provide her personal information, the subject claimed he could send her the money via Western Union but still needed her bank account information. She again refused and contacted the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and was informed it was a scam.

Police also warn the public of two other scams: check overpayment, and overseas lottery scams. Check overpayment scams target consumers selling items through classified ads or online auction sites. Unsuspecting sellers may suffer a large monetary loss when scammers pass off counterfeit cashier's checks, corporate checks, or personal checks for overpayment of the items and then request a refund for the overpayment.

Overseas lottery scams target unsuspecting citizens who receive an e-mail notifying them that they have won a sizable lottery in another country. After replying to the e-mail, they are instructed to send a check to an address overseas, often thousands of dollars, as "good faith" money or as a processing fee to secure their winnings. Citizens should be aware of these scams and should use good judgment before providing personal and financial information to unknown people.

If you have questions about letters announcing unclaimed lottery winnings, unsolicited correspondence, telephone calls requesting your financial information, or any other suspicious correspondence or telephone calls, please contact your local police agency for assistance.

Anyone with information regarding any financial scam working in Milpitas is encouraged to call the Milpitas Police Department at (408) 586-2400. Information can be given anonymously by calling (408) 586-2500, or online at

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