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Military members and their families becoming a more popular and lucrative target for fraudsters – Colorado Springs, Colorado

Colorado Springs, Colorado 2021-07-30 07:00:39 –

Colorado Springs — Throughout July, consumer protection advocates across the country have been working to raise awareness of the rise in fraud targeting military members, their families, and veterans. News5 delves into how scammers manipulate members of the army and use them to steal from others.

For years, scammers have targeted military and veterans to steal large sums of money, but according to the Better Business Bureau Scam Tracker Data 2020, military families are actually more scammers than non-military personnel. It was the first year that I was most likely to lose money. Military consumer.

Air Force veteran Joe Keough says he answered a random phone call about making a donation to support a military charity.

“They were looking for cash and cars for disabled veterans,” Keef said.

But something went sick, so he looked a little deeper and realized that everything was fake.

“As a result, I was able to put together a statement of facts and send it to the Attorney General’s office,” Keef said.

According to the 2020 BBB Scam Tracker Risk Report, active duty personnel, military spouses, and veterans lose more money than non-military consumers and are more vulnerable to fraud.

“Our community is home to many military families, so it’s very important to educate and raise awareness, whether it’s active, spouse, veteran, or retired.” , Says Adarodriguez, a BBB in southern Colorado.

The Federal Trade Commission reports that military consumers in 2020 will spend more than $ 41 million to encourage fraud, more than $ 12 million for prizes, sweepstakes and lottery scams, and an additional 800 for online purchase scams. I lost a million dollars. Losses from military fraud amounted to $ 125 million in 2020.

“Our military families moving to new areas for them use high-pressure tactics and are often targeted by door-to-door contractors, taking advantage of the fact that this family may not know much about the community. “Rodriguez said.

In addition to targeting military personnel, scammers also pretend to be active service members to steal from people.

Recently, on an online gaming platform, a woman connected with a person who introduced herself as a general of the Stephen Townsend army stationed in Afghanistan, but he was a scammer, police said.

“This poor man. He has this established military career, but scammers use his name in his love plans,” said Springfield, Pennsylvania, investigating the case. Detective Steve Craig of the Field Township Police Department said.

The woman involved in the romance plan eventually sent a $ 305,000 check to the scammers.

“The military stuff is what we often see, one because it has an overseas element, but the other is that people have a very strong affinity for the military. “AARP spokesperson Seth Boffeli said.

Since July is Military Consumer Month, consumer protection advocates have shared a variety of resources and advice to help military families and neighbors over the past few weeks.

Here are some of the places where you can find resources to help you or share with your military family in your life:

Better Business Bureau Military & Veterans Initiative
https://www.bbb.org/pacific-southwest/bbb-community-education-events/military-line/

Stop fraud Colorado consumer guides for military personnel and their families.
https://www.stopfraudcolorado.gov/fraud-center/military-fraud/Military%20Guide.pdf

Federal Trade Commission Military Consumer Monthly Resources:
https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/blog/2021/07/military-consumer-month-2021



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