Arapahoe County sheriff’s investigators are warning the public about a recent scam involving fake barcodes on gift cards, the sheriff’s office said on Facebook in late March.
“Gift cards with fake barcodes were found at a King Soopers in Centennial. A woman purchased a $500 Visa gift card only to find there were no funds on it,” the sheriff’s office wrote.
The theft involves scammers printing out their own barcodes and placing them over the gift card barcode at local retailers, according to the sheriff’s office. When the card is activated, the money is added to the scammer’s card instead of the card being purchased.
According to the sheriff’s office, you can do the following to protect yourself:
• Examine the back of the gift card before you buy it, and check for signs of tampering, such as barcode stickers.
• Make sure the gift card’s barcode number, visible through the window on the back of the gift card’s packaging, matches the number on the packaging itself.
• Pick a gift card from the middle or back of the rack since they are less likely to have been tampered with.
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