Looking ahead in 2009 for potential scams.
The Grandparent scam was huge in 2008. A con artist claims to be a grandchild in a desperate situation and in need of money. And there was the fake check scam. Victims receive a fake check for a sweepstakes or a job, but pays a percentage to the scammer.
Glen Loyd at Consumer Protection says this time of year is ripe for scam.
"You get the IRS phishing scam, where they tell you that you have some money coming and you have to give them information where they can send the check. And of course when you do that they take your identity."
Loyd says job scams will likely be very big in 2009.
"They claim that you can make a lot of money doing this or that, and they have testimonials on television or on the radio saying, you know, 'I made $30,000 in a month' and so on and so forth."
The consumer advocate says people never really paid attention to so-called job offers when they were working, but with a higher unemployment rate, people are listening.
"'Well, they couldn't say it on television if it wasn't true.' But, yes, there's a lot of things that they say on television that aren't true. And by the time you find it out they're long gone."
Loyd says many job scams involve answering an ad and sending in money.
"The thing to remember in 2009 is 'never pay for a job' and if you're out of work, don't do desperate things. Call Consumer Protection first because we know about the scams. Don't ever pay for a job."
Folks who are out of work and desperate are more likely to listen to phone scams and read their junk mail.
The Consumer Protection Department is putting together the Top 10 list of scams of 2008, which should be released soon.