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'Be mindful that anytime you are asked to purchase and redeem gift card information,' LOPD says, 'it is most likely a scam'

The phone calls sound legitimate: Someone purporting to be from AppleCare says the victim has a virus on her computer and gains remote access to fix it. But the Lake Oswego Police Department is warning residents — so far, the calls have targeted elderly women — that it's all a scam after receiving three reports in about a month.

According to police, the "persistent" calls are masked to look like they're coming from AppleCare. After gaining access to victims' computers and engaging in extended conversations, the caller tells the women they need to go to the store, buy Apple iTunes gift cards and disclose the redemption numbers.

In each case, police said, the scammer told the women to purchase cards in $100 increments; the total loss has been $1,200-$2,000 per incident.

"There are various types of scams circulating. Be mindful that anytime you are asked to purchase and redeem gift card information, it is most likely a scam," LOPD Lt. Darryl Wrisley said. "If remote access is ever requested for your computer, ensure you initiated the call yourself after verifying the number."

Anyone who has fallen victim to the scam is urged to contact the LOPD's non-emergency number at 503-635-0238.

— The Review

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