MONTPELIER, Vt. - Lebanon police say bail and lottery scams are affecting residents in the city.
The bail scam usually happens at night and targets an older person. Police say the caller usually represents themselves in the following ways:
- As a relative of the intended victims
- An official with a court or law enforcement agency who has supposedly arrested a relative of the intended victim.
- A person using a common name such as "John or "Dave."
The caller claims to be under arrest and will say they have a person related to the victim in their custody. The caller then requests the victim to wire or give them credit or debit card information to use the money for bail.
On some occasions the caller will call back requesting more money. Police say this is not normal law enforcement procedures and they do not request payment over the phone.
A lottery scam is also affecting some residents. Police say victims will receive a phone call, email, or piece of mail claiming they won a large sum of money. After contacting a claims agent, police say, the victim will be asked to pay processing fees or transfer charges so that the money can be distributed.
Here are some ways to protect yourself:
- Resist the temptation to act immediately
- Know with whom you are speaking to
- Check with other family members before sending any money