Elaborate phone scam targets Wenatchee businesses

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Several Wenatchee-area business have been targeted in the past week in an elaborate phone scam involving an alleged crooked employer, the Wenatchee Police Department said.

Under the scam, a caller contacts a business asking for the manager’s name and then ask to speak with them.  Once they have the manager on the phone they will then ask for the owner’s name.

Later, they call back claiming to be a “detective” or “investigator.”

“The scammer then uses those names and weaves a convincing story about the employee’s supervisor(s) being involved in some kind of criminal activity – specifically money laundering in at least two cases,” the police said in a press release.

Asking for the employee’s assistance, they have the employee empty out the cash drawer and/or safe and go to the nearest Target or Walmart and buy Visa gift cards.

They then have the employee read the card numbers. The scammer quickly drains the money from the cards.

Police advise skepticism when dealing with people over the phone.