Be on the lookout for these election scams

Election phone scams on the rise

With Election Day less than three weeks away, politicians are ramping up their quest for support, but at the same time scammers are ramping up efforts to steal money and identity through election-related scams.

Four phone scams. That's how many common election rip-offs the Better Business Bureau says voters need to look out for prior to casting their ballot on November 8.

"We haven't seen so many reports as of now and the reason is that many folks don't even realize that they are being scammed," said Miguel Segura, a regional director at the Better Business Bureau.

The first scam involves campaign fund collection where the scammer claims to represent a legitimate organization.

"You never really want to be giving your credit card account to someone who is cold-calling you. So if you want to support a candidate for your organization, take it as a friendly reminder and get online, find the official website, and contribute directly to the campaign," said Manuel Medina, chairman of the Bexar County Democratic Party.

Scam No. 2 is where the con artist makes you believe you need to re-register to get to your personal information.

"We do not give information over the phone," said Jacque Callanen, the Bexar County Election Administrator. "We do not keep phone numbers in the records, so even when we put them into our system we do not put the phone number in there."

The third scam uses a fake election survey where the receiver is promised entry into a sweepstakes, but they have to fork over money to get the prize.

"They tell you that you need to cover the shipping and handling and/or the taxes for whatever gift it is you are receiving, and that's how they make their money," Segura said.

The final scam is where the scammer insists you have to vote by phone, which never happens in the U.S. election process.

"We just want to reassure our voters that this is our process so they won't have any doubt and they are helping us get the word out, that if somebody calls and asks for identifying information, it's not going to happen," Callanen said.

For more information on these scams just go to the Better Business Bureau's official website.

(© 2016 KENS)


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