Coos County Sheriff's Office

COOS COUNTY — Scams are lighting up phones again.

According to a press release from the Coos County Sheriff’s Office, reports have been made of various scams hitting the local area.

In the first scam, a person on the other line “appears to be someone over the age of 18” when they ask for explicit photos. After photos are sent, a reply comes back that “they are the parents of the minor child that they were sent to and want money to not press charges,” the release said.

“This is a scam, as well as a reminder not to send any images to someone you do not know,” the release said.

The second is a recurring Social Security scam where the caller tells the victim they are in jeopardy “you don’t pay them in gift cards,” while the third is a Microsoft scam stating that a computer firewall needs renewal costing $499.

“They are attempting to get account numbers, or gift cards,” the release said. “Anyone that calls on the phone asking for payment in gift cards is a scam. Anyone that calls and wants account numbers is a scam.”

To fight these calls, set cell phones to not accept blocked numbers while home phones can be programmed to do the same through the phone company.

“Screen all your calls if you have a landline and let the answering machine pick them up,” the release said. “Do not answer any number that you do not know, let them go to voice mail if you have a cell phone.”

Scams can be reported to the Oregon Department of Justice at www.doj.state.or.us/finfraud/engexplanation.shtml or by calling 877-877-9392.

“Please, be careful and do not give any personal information out by phone,” the release said.

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Reporter Jillian Ward can be reached at 541-269-1222, ext. 235, or by email at jillian.ward@theworldlink.com. Follow her on Twitter: @JE_Wardwriter.