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Scams are extremely common. Americans of all ages are scammed every day. If you’ve ever found yourself in the position of realizing that you’ve been scammed, you probably wondered what you should do next. We’re here to provide advice on how and where to report scams and how to protect yourself from future scams.

Become an Expert Scam Spotter

If you are scammed, one of the best things you can do is to educate yourself about scams. This will allow you to spot future scams and stop those scams before they start. While there are many different types of scams out there, scams typically share a set of shared characteristics. Learn to spot these shared characteristics, and you can recognize a wide variety of the scams that come at you.

Signs of a Scam:

  • Asks you to keep it a secret from anyone else
  • Asks you to send money via wire transfer, MoneyPak cards, any kind of gift card, cryptocurrency, or cash
  • Pressures you to make the deal right then and there
  • Asks you to “confirm” your social security number of other private information
  • Threatens that you will be sued or go to jail if you do not pay
  • You have to pay money to get money

Reporting Scams

If you are scammed, you should always report the scam, regardless of dollar amount lost. Reporting scams can help bring scammers to justice. You may have lost only a small amount of money to a scam, but there may be many other people who also lost money to this same scam, making the total amount lost to this scam very high. In instances like this, the government may take steps to investigate and go after the scammers. Follow this checklist when reporting scams:

If you’ve been scammed and you want advice on where to report the scam, call Contra Costa Senior Legal Services at (925) 609-7900. We can provide advice on how and where to report scams, fraud, and identity theft.

Learn more about scams: