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Here's what you need to know about gift card scams

Posted at 7:40 AM, Mar 08, 2021
and last updated 2021-03-08 07:40:02-05

(WSYM) — Many of the worst scams right now involve the gift card rack at local supermarkets and drugstores.

That's because scammers convince people to purchase gift cards for hundreds of dollars.

The gift card scam happened to Shawncea Colvin, who was buying a used car online.

"I put $200 on one and $100 on another."

It also happened to Mary Cullick after a call claiming to be from Social Security.

"Get two gift cards...$500 each."

However, one state is trying to put a stop to gift card scams; 1,000 grocery stores in Arizona have teamed up with the state attorney general to put stop signs at their gift card displays.

The signs say gift cards cannot be used to pay any government agency. But some say it only scratches the surface when it comes to stopping these scams.

Other states beside Arizona would need to do this, and the signs only address fake government calls. They don't mention the gift card scams targeting people trying to buy boats, campers and cars.

Bottom line? Don't pay anyone with gift cards. They are untraceable and non-refundable. And if you have older relatives, make sure they know the warning signs of a phone scam.