What are two or three new scams or tricks I should be aware of this year?
There are several. ONe that the Police Department has seen involves a "winning lottery ticket." The victim meets up with someone in parking lot of a store; in a recent case, the Springfield Costco. The victim was told that he could purchase a winning lottery ticket if he withdrew money and gave it to the suspect. He did so and, unfortunately, he lost $30,000.00 of his money. The sad lesson learned, if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably isn't. Don't withdraw funds for any sort of lottery ticket in a parking lot; purchase tickets from authorized dealers only. Another scam we've seen involves the purchase of vehicles on Ebay and wiring thousands of dollars without a contract or visual inspection of the vehicle prior to inspection of the purchase. We work at least a case a month where someone has wired over $10,000.00 to an unknown party in another state in hopes of receiving a vehicle delivered to them. The vehicle is never delivered and there is very little police can do. Purchase vehicles in person at local dealerships; never wire money for this purpose. We've also seen these sorts of scams on Craigslist. Be aware. We work many scams and there are new ones coming down the pike all of the time. We ask that people, including family members of the elderly, monitor bank accounts closely during the holiday season. For examples and helpful information, go to the Financial Crimes section of the FCPD website.