Making hundreds, even thousands of dollars in just a few hours may sound like a great opportunity. But some locals are finding out that sometimes things aren't as good as they seem.
The number of scams in Central Texas has skyrocketed and a certain group of people are being targeted. They're going after those close to retirement age and the elderly since they usually have some sort of savings account or may easily trust other people.
But one Killeen man wasn't scammed by a call or an email, he actually lost nearly $12,000 after responding to a newspaper ad.
It all looked legit to Bob Massey. A secret shopper job that required him to cash in money orders and send the cash to a specific address. He got a cut and rated the store's performance. But only 3 days into the job, he got a call from his bank saying the money orders were counterfeit. "That money meant nothing so by the time that I found out, than there went $12,000 that I owed the bank," says Massey.
He's not the only one that's been fooled. Scams are reaching people in Killeen in all sorts of ways. Saying they're your bank and need your personal information. Or emails saying you had a long lost cousin who passed away and left you millions.
The Killeen Police Department has a simple rule of thumb. "The biggest thing that we try to tell everyone if it seems like its too good to be true, it is. People are not just going to offer you money that you've never heard of," says Carroll Smith withe the Killeen Police Department.
The city of Cameron is also being hit hard. Only, some scam artists are going after teachers. "They're asking people to give them a $450 allowance that's going to help them put into some kind of a fund that's going to basically cover them if they ever need to use Medicaid or Medicare,"says Chief Randy Dixon.
Bob was told he will most likely never see his money again since those behind the scams are hard to track down. He just hopes others learn from his mistake. "I was just devastated because that was money that I had put aside for some extremely important things and I'm still suffering from it," says Massey.
Anyone who receives an email or call like this should report it to their local police department. That way they have a better idea of who the scammers are going after and how they can keep others from becoming victims.