Scammers taking aim at your change -


Scammers taking aim at your change

When most people think of scams, they think of them happening in convenience stores. But police say most of these scams have been happening outside of businesses in the parking lot.

Police have noticed an increase in the amount of counterfeit money schemes in recent weeks.

Tucson Police Sergeant Maria Hawke says that in the past seven days, there have been nine counterfeit money cases reported, primarily targeting the average person.

The method is simple: Suspects will walk up to a person in a parking lot and ask if they can make change, swapping counterfeit bills for cash.

Police also say people are using fake money at yard sales.

The counterfeit bills have been in different denominations -- ten, 20, 50 and 100 dollar bills.

"If it's a legitimate person needing to exchange money, more often than not they won't have a problem going inside a business," Hawke said.

Detectives urge the public to use extra caution when exchanging money with another person, especially strangers.

To determine if a bill is fake, high denominations will not have a security line or strip in the bill when held up to the light," she added.

Detectives also say that fake bills can feel more stiff, waxy or thicker than real money.

Joe Bitar has worked at a convenience store for 12 years and not once has he ever been fooled by counterfeit money.

"I always check. I have my marker. You can see the fake bills from one dollar to one hundred," Bitar said.

Copyright 2012 America Now. All rights reserved.

Powered by WorldNow