AST reports vulgar, agressive scammer phone calls; says to 'be wary'

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BRISTOL BAY REGION, Alaska (KTUU) - Alaska State Troopers put out a warning Friday advising area residents to be wary of scammers.

According to the AST post, troopers recently took a report of a caller harassing an elderly person in the Bristol Bay Region.

The caller is, or callers are, allegedly targeting older individuals and seeking personal information, including credit card numbers. The caller involved in the incident reported to troopers apparently became verbally vulgar and abusive toward the elderly victim.

When receiving such calls, AST advises, people should request the caller's full name, contact information, telephone number and employer, then hang up.

You should never give out personal information to callers you don't know, and really should only ever give out personal information if you've initiated the call and are certain about the number you've called. Remember that some scammers will give false customer service numbers that will lead you to scam partners.

Some things to keep in mind, courtesy AST:

- Never pay money to get a "free" prize or gift. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

- Check up on all offers you receive before sending money. Ask for written information on investments and charities, and then make sure that they are properly registered.

- Look up sales and business offers with the Better Business Bureau, or the Alaska Department of Law Consumer Protection Unit before you buy.

- Help prevent telemarketers from calling you at all by registering your phone number with the national Do Not Call List here or by calling (888) 382-1222.

- Report phone scams to the Federal Trade Commission here or by calling 1 (877) FTC-HELP (1-877-382-4357). You can also report them to the Alaska Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Unit at (907) 269-5200, or toll free from outside Anchorage at 1 (888) 576-2539.