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The Top 5 Internet Scams and How to Avoid Them

1. Grandparent Scam – The caller pretends to be a grandchild who has been arrested and needs bail money. Hang Up! It’s a scam.
• If you are concerned, call your family member.
2. Publisher’s Clearinghouse Scam – You’ve won millions, but have to pay taxes first. Hang Up! It’s a scam.
• Publisher Clearinghouse will NEVER notify a winner over the phone or tell them to make a payment to receive their prize.
3. Arrest Warrant Scam – If you receive a text or voice mail requesting you to call your local Police Department or Sheriff’s Department because you have a warrant out for your arrest for missing jury duty. Hang Up! It’s a scam.
• The Police and Sheriff will NOT solicit money to resolve an arrest warrant.
• If you are concerned that you may have a warrant for your arrest, call the Prince George’s County Sheriff’s Office at 301-780-8600.
4. Romance Scam – Scammer makes contact on dating sites, social media or email. They gain a rapport, then eventually have an emergency and need money.
• NEVER send money to someone you’ve only communicated with online or over the phone.
5. You Owe Taxes Scam – Caller identifies themselves as an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Agent, tells you that you owe back taxes and to pay immediately!
• The IRS states they do NOT “initiate contact with taxpayers by email, text message or social media to request personal or financial information.”
• The IRS will NOT direct you to mail cash, wire money or purchase gift cards for payment.
If you become a victim of a financial scam, report it to Police at (301) 352-1200
(Source: PGPD Financial crimes unit) 
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