Fraud Prevention Tactics

By Paolo Cisneros, The Sheridan Press. Reprinted with permission.

A pair of personal and corporate security experts told members of the local business community Wednesday that fraud in the Sheridan area is more prevalent than many people realize.

Detective Jim Arzy of the Sheridan Police Department and Corporate Security Officer Justin Svec of First Interstate Bank gave their presentation at this month’s edition of the Sheridan County Chamber of Commerce member luncheon at the Best Western Sheridan Center.

Arzy touched on topics including telephone scams, elder fraud, mail fraud, and investment fraud, among others. He urged members of the audience to verify exactly who is on the receiving end of both their money and personal information whenever a transaction takes place. ‘You can’t just take people’s word for it,” he said.

In recent months, the Sheridan Police Department has released information to the public regarding several telephone scams aimed at prompting area residents to provide private information including bank account and bank routing numbers. In one such incident, the caller was brazen enough to admit to a Sheridan detective that he was attempting to exploit the recipients of his call.

Arzy said residents who experience suspicious circumstances should report the incidents to law enforcement while remaining careful not to take matters into their own hands. ‘Don’t try to scam the scammers, because we have successfully prosecuted people for that,” he said.

Svec detailed some of the methods used by First Interstate and the company’s staff to detect counterfeit bills in addition to warning audience members once again to be wary of people or organizations that seem interested in collecting personal information.

Additionally, he suggested that everyone check their credit rating annually as a means of preventing the kind of unauthorized activity often associated with identity theft.

The monthly Chamber event serves to bring together members of the Sheridan business community and provide networking opportunities. The Chamber currently currents 575 local businesses as members.

The next Chamber luncheon is Wednesday, June 12, 11:30 am to 1:00 pm, at the Best Western Sheridan Center. The luncheons are open to the public. The luncheon buffet is $15.

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