Magazine Sales Scam
Release Date: Apr 24, 2012
Larimer County Sheriff's Office
John Schulz, Public Information Officer
Timnath Police recently notified local law enforcement agencies that they had contacted a van of approximately 13 individuals ranging in age from 17 to 26. They identified themselves as a magazine sales crew that was staying in the mountains and coming down to sell magazines.
Most of the door-to-door magazine sales efforts are a scam aimed at taking your money, getting your checking account or credit card number and driver's license number, or worse other kinds of theft. This information is then used to remove money from your accounts, charge items to your credit card or sold for false identification. Seldom will you ever actually receive the magazines.
These salespeople will often represent themselves to be a relative of a nearby neighbor or a local school student trying to earn money for a scholarship or an educational trip overseas, most of which is just an outright lie. They will use aggressive and high pressure sales techniques to get you to buy.
Larimer County Sheriff Justin Smith advises residents to notify local law enforcement anytime they are not comfortable with a door-to-door salesman. Try to provide as much descriptive information as you can, such as height, weight, hair color, any identifying marks like tattoos, scars or other unusual features as well as a description of the clothes they are wearing.
NEVER let them in your house despite their requests for a glass of water, a cool place to rest or to use the phone or the restroom. Many times they will use this opportunity to steal other valuables from your home. You should also notify law enforcement if you see these people harassing a neighbor.
If you believe them to be a legitimate salesperson, you should contact the organization they say they represent and check to see if indeed the organization is conducting a magazine drive. They will be glad to come back at a later time if they are indeed legitimate.
The salesperson coming to your door may be a young person who was looking for summer employment or just looking to travel, older people trying to get a second start or even criminals who are trying to avoid arrest. Many times these individuals are themselves victims of false promises and are not aware that the magazines they are selling will never be delivered. They are often times abandoned in a city miles from their home if their sales don't measure up.