What one woman did right when she was targeted by a gift card scam

Be cautious if someone asks you to buy them gift cards without seeing their face

By Lauren Verno - Consumer investigative reporter

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. - Before you buy any gift cards, you might want to double-check they end up in the right hands.  

If someone asks for you to buy them gift cards and you never see their face, it is more than likely a scam.

There are two different cases that happened recently in St. Johns County.

A Ponte Vedra Beach woman was sent an email about signing up to be a secret shopper. The woman said she was sent a check from Morgantown Bank and Trust for nearly $3,000. The sender directed the woman to buy gift cards in the amount the check was made out for. 

The woman, in that case, realized it was a scam and contacted St. Johns County Sheriff's Office. 

Unfortunately, another St. Johns County resident was not as lucky. 

She told deputies she received a message through Facebook from a person she thought was her uncle in Pennsylvania. The message told her to get gift cards and provide the information to another person online. The victim only communicated through Facebook Messenger and text messages. 

In this case, the victim did buy the gift cards and give the information to the scammer. 

The victim reported the incident to the FBI, but it told her there was no chance of getting her money back. 

When in doubt, if cannot confirm the person’s identity, do not give them money -- especially gift cards. 

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