The bureau reports that Americans lost roughly $110 million from the different scams.


Scammers are using methods like phone calls, texts, email, and mail to draw people in.


With promises of money, vacations and much more.


While the most common target are the elderly, scammers have adapted to social media.


By sending messages on sites like Facebook and Instagram to draw in a younger target.


Pam Marlowe of the Erie Better Business Bureau says the Erie branch has received several calls in the last few years.


She says it's best to always double check with someone you can trust before clicking or accept any offer.


"You may want to just check out, let someone else put their eyes on it to make sure it's legitimate.” Marlowe said “Talking to friends and family, and getting referrals for shopping reasons as well, that's a great way to help prevent certain types of scams."

And now here are some red flags to be aware of when viewing a potential offer:


  1. Keep in mind you cannot just randomly win a sweepstakes, you have to enter it first.
  2. You should never be asked for a fee upfront before receiving your prize.
  3. And if there should be any taxes that need to be paid, the money should never be wired through gift cards or prepaid money cards.

To keep up to date with the latest scams, and education on how to spot and report them, visit the BBB’s website