SJC woman loses thousands to anti-virus scam

Deputies reminding residents of the warning signs

ST. JOHNS COUNTY, Fla. – Deputies in St. Johns County are reminding residents to be vigilant of an anti-virus software scam after a woman received a call and lost thousands of dollars.

Deputies said the caller stated he was with the woman's anti-virus software company, and she was entitled to a $200 refund.

During the supposed refund, the caller told the woman the anti-virus company over-refunded her $3,200 and needed repayment in the form of gift cards from Walmart and Google.

Chuck Mulligan with the St. Johns County Sheriff's Office said the woman complied with the caller's orders and ended up giving away $5,000. He said it should be an instant red flag anytime someone calls offering money or asking for it.

"That's not how a legitimate business would take payment anyway 99-percent of the time," Mulligan said.  "Pump the brakes any time you hear Green Dot cards, Walmart cards or any kind of e-commerce cards in lieu of some official business transaction."

Mulligan said anyone who isn't sure should immediately stop the phone call and dial police. They will help figure out whether the call is legitimate.

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