A new scam involving fraudulent online romance with the actor Steve Burton from ‘General Hospital' uses gift cards to defraud victims of thousands of dollars. Be warned, it's not what it seems!
Scammers Misrepresenting Steve Burton
Fraudsters are posing as Steve Burton, the famous star of the soap opera ‘General Hospital'. These scam artists have been deceiving victims into parting with large sums of money under the guise of an online romance.
A case in point is the unfortunate experience of a victim from Indianapolis who found themselves scammed out of ,000. Not only do these scammers impersonate Burton, but they also ask victims to send gift cards, making it a two-pronged deception.
The Role of Gift Cards
Gift cards have become the weapon of choice for these scammers because they are tough to trace. This allows the fraudsters to easily sell them on the black market. The victims are requested to send a digital gift card or a photo of the physical card's activation code. As a result, their hard-earned money is stolen, often without any hope of recovery.
Words of Caution from Burton himself
Support for Victims and Preventive Measures
In the face of such scams, help is available. Walmart, for instance, has refunded million to affected victims since 2018. They have also established a hotline, (888) 537-5503, as a resource for potential victims of gift card scams.
Other avenues are also available for victims to report such scams, such as the Federal Trade Commission.
Another Scam to Watch Out For
The internet is awash with scams, with the Burton scam just being one example. Another recent scam to be wary of involves Venmo, an online payment app, which is being used to empty victims' checking accounts. Be vigilant and always verify before parting with your money.