NORTH EAST, Md. (WJZ) — Maryland State Police are investigating a phone/computer scam in Cecil County in which a victim was nearly scammed out of tens of thousands of dollars.
A woman reported a phone/computer scam to state police on August 23. The victim said she began receiving phone calls about her computer virus software being set to expire.
She provided her bank information to the suspects, who took control of her bank account and withdrew $350.
The victim said she asked for a refund, but instead of getting one, the suspect moved around $35,000 from her savings account into her checking account.
The suspect then told her they “accidentally” deposited the money from their company into her checking account, and then told the victim he needed her to return the money in cash or he would lose his job.
The victim was told she could pay the money back in two installments, and believing she had to do this, she went to her bank and withdrew $17,500. She packaged the money in plastic and wrapped it in duct tape, as she had been instructed.
The victim sent the package to an address in California by FedEx priority before becoming suspicious and contacting state police.
Investigators got the tracking information for the package and contacted the FedEx fraud department, who intercepted the package prior to it being loaded on a route delivery vehicle.
It was opened and they found the $17,500 sent by the victim. They then conducted an audit of the California address and found a second suspicious package that had a large amount of money.
State police warn the public to be aware and ensure that others are aware of these scams so they do not fall victim to them. They also remind people to never give out personal information over the phone, and if you do get such a phone call to hang up and call local state police immediately.