Cassville police deal with online scam

Wednesday, September 24, 2014

Resident's identity allegedly stolen, used to scam retailers

The Cassville Police Department has opened an investigation into a trio of scam reports through eBay and PayPal.

According to Police Chief Dana Kammerlohr, the department has received calls from California, the United Kingdom and Virginia, each reporting products sent to a Cassville woman's address had not been paid for.

"One was a computer and one was a camera," Kammerlohr said. "We think a person has been ordering stuff from a woman whose information has been compromised."

Kammerlohr said she believes the Cassville woman's identity was stolen, and is being used to buy, but not pay for, items using eBay and PayPal. The items are designated to be shipped to the woman's Cassville address, but Kammerlohr said the packages have never arrived at her home.

"The woman has been in contact with her bank," she said. "We have informed her that if she receives any packages, to call us. But, she hasn't received anything, so it doesn't make a lot of sense. There's still a piece of the puzzle we haven't found yet because things like this are so hard to trace back."

David Lindfors, of Virginia Beach, Va., said his son recently attempted to sell about $3,000 in retail camera equipment, including a Canon camera and numerous accessories.

He said he his son shipped the item to the Cassville woman's address after receiving a fake PayPal email claiming the items had been paid for.

"We put the stuff on eBay and a couple days later, a guy emailed about buying the camera," he said. "My son then got an email that looked like it was from PayPal, but we later found out that PayPal does not send such emails. We mailed it, and then about half an hour later, we got a call telling us it was a phishing scam."

Lindfors said he has been in contact with the Cassville Police Department, the Postmaster General and the Cassville Post Office to put a stop on the delivery.

He said he has put postal intercept on the package, which was slated to be delivered on Thursday.

Lindfors said there was a phone number associated with the buyer, but said it only accepted text messages. The number has a Cleveland, Ohio, area code.

Kammerlohr said the incident should serve as a reminder to all to keep personal information as protected as possible.

"Buyer beware," she said. "You have to protect your personal information and credit and debit cards."

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