PERQUIMANS COUNTY, N.C. (WAVY) — The sheriff of Perquimans County has a warning for residents: Be wary of online scammers.
Someone in the county was a recent victim.
“They received an email. Once they got the email they opened it up. When they opened it up, it popped a virus onto their screen; ‘Call this number well help you get rid of the virus,'” said Sheriff Shelby White.
White says this was just the beginning of the scam.
“They actually told them that, by the virus being entered into, that there was a financial hacker who got into their system and got into their financial information. [A]nd [the scammer was] telling them to move the money from the accounts they’re in to a dummy account so they can use the dummy account to catch the hacker,” said White.
White says the scammers then told the victim to take the money out in small amounts so it’s not suspicious.
“Pretty much everything is being put on gift cards, and [the victim] would tell them the number on the gift cards and they would draw the money off of them,” he said.
White says the scammers continued this scam over a more than two week period.
He says it can be difficult to catch these kinds of scammers.
“This one here, we’re going to get the feds involved, get the FBI involved, and see if they could help us track it, because we know it’s not going to be anything local,” said White.
He says if someone is telling you to put money on a gift card, many times it’s a scam.
He says if there’s a question about something that could be a scam, don’t hesitate to contact the sheriff’s office.