13 InvestigatesScam Alert


CONTACT 13: New scam targets Pokemon Go players

Posted at 5:00 PM, Aug 03, 2016
and last updated 2018-11-21 17:46:08-05
It's a game that's sweeping the nation. But while players are trying to catch Pokemon, scammers are trying to catch them. Contact 13 Chief Investigator Darcy Spears explains how your family could become victims.
"I play like almost every day," says Pokemon fan Erik.
Gamers young and old are glued to Pokemon Go. But beware. Don't get hooked into the latest hoax. The Better Business Bureau says it comes in the form of a fake email.
"Don't open. Don't click. Don't do anything. Just delete it," says the BBB's Rhonda Mettler.
The email fools Pokemon fans into thinking they've got to pay to play. But this nationwide craze doesn't cost a thing. For now, it's fun for free.
"The developer has not announced any type of paid version of the app," says Rhonda.
The BBB says the email message reads: "Due to the overwhelming response to our new Pokemon Go App and the need for more powerful servers we can no longer afford to keep your account as free." 
Pokemon player Barbara hasn't heard about the bogus email but isn't surprised.
"We're just out here trying to play the game and have fun and get out to all the parks with the kids, and someone's trying to make a profit off of that. Like always," says Barbara.
So here's what to look for: the email claims your account will be frozen unless you agree to pay $12.99 per month. 
It even includes a link for payments. Along with getting your money, the crooks are also hoping to steal user passwords. 
But the BBB confirms the email isn't from your app store or the game developer, Niantic. 
Barbara's just happy the app is still free. 
"That makes me feel a lot better," says Barbara.
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