The Better Business Bureau of North Central Texas is warning businesses and consumers about phone calls that claim to be from the BBB about sweepstakes winnings.
Monica Horton, president of North Central Texas BBB office, says it is a scam to try and get your money.
Horton says these phone scams are very prevalent across the country and have just begun to pop up in Wichita Falls.
She adds it is frustrating because these con artists are representing themselves as the BBB to try and gain your trust.
Roy Boswell, a Wichita Falls resident, says his church, the Broken Chains Freedom Church, received a message from someone claiming to be with the BBB about money they had won.
The message says:
"Hello Mr. (inaudible)... are you there? This is Mr. Wayne Randall from the Better Business Bureau calling to you in regards to a check that we see here that you have in our system that we then can deliver to you Mr. (inaudible) for approximately 2.5 million dollars. So for further information, you can please provide us back a call. Our contact number 1(876)278-4321... I repeat.. 1(876)278-4321 and ask for Mr. Wayne Randall. Thank you very much."
Horton says residents across Texoma have been receiving phone calls or messages just like this one.
Boswell says he immediately knew something wasn't right.
Boswell says, "I probably would just ignore the call completely except they said they were with the Better Business Bureau so I wanted to contact the local office to let them know somebody was actually using their name to run the scams."
The BBB warns that these scammers will ask for you to transfer money to them to cover taxes or fees on the winnings.
Also, Horton says the calls appear to come from area code 876, in Jamaica.
"These con artists are outside of the United States," Horton says. "There's really nothing that can be done. U.S. law enforcement can't go after and get them, go after them in Jamaica."
Boswell says even though he was cautious not to fall for the phone scam, others may not be so lucky.
"I just want all the consumers to know that this is out there too because there are so many of these scams going around and unfortunately there are people out there today that think they are real and will follow up on them and they end up losing money," Boswell says.
The BBB says these scams don't stop with scammers using their name; the FBI, IRS and other organizations have also been used in similar scams.
If you have any questions about a suspicious phone or email, you are urged to call the BBB at (940)691-1172 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org