Phony hostages and solicited break-ins: Scams in Hoboken you should keep an eye out for

HOBOKEN – Hoboken Sergeant Edgardo Cruz says residents should keep their eyes peeled for a number of recently reported scams.
In a press release, the department says one such incident is strangers making their way into opened apartments.
“This is why it is very important to secure your homes as best as possible,” said Cruz in a statement sent via email. “Do not announce vacation plans on social media or leave packages out for an extended period of times. This let’s outsiders know that there may not be anyone home.”
Cruz added that the department has also seen an uptick in incidents wherein callers say they are holding a relative hostage and threaten to kill them unless the victim wires money over. “Usually the caller would ask that the victim send the money to another country, in this case Puerto Rico,” an excerpt from the press release says. “If anyone receives a phone call such as this one, do not engage the caller. They will continuously keep you on the phone talking, hoping that fear sets in until the victim sends the money. Instead, hang up and immediately call your relative and confirm their whereabouts.”
A third incident locals need be aware, according to the police department, concerns a site that offers care services for children, seniors and pets. According to Cruz, several reports have been made recently where victims receive a check connected in some way to the site, a check larger than agreed upon for the services.
“The sender of the check will ask the victim to deposit the check, keep the agreed amount and send the rest to a specific address,” Cruz says in the release. “Within a day or two, the check will not clear, leaving the victim without funds in the bank.”
Anyone in this situation should not deposit the check and instead send it back to the sender and terminate contact with them, the police department says. For help call 201-420-2100. – Steven Rodas

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