BELOIT (WKOW) -- Beloit Police are warning people about a recent attempt at a phone scam targeting residents.

Officials say a message was left saying the woman had won $2 million and a 2012 Mercedes in a Publisher's Clearing House contest. The message was left several times asking her to call 876-873-2825.

When the number was called, she was told to buy a Green Dot Moneypak card with $699.99 on it. The scammer claimed it was to cover a 1% federal tax they're required to collect before delivering any prizes or money.

Authorities traced the number back to Jamaica. They warn to never call back a number with an 876 area code. Once money is sent there, it cannot be recovered.

Beloit Police offer these tips to remember to avoid falling victim to one of these scams:

  • Don't pay any money to collect supposed sweepstakes winnings. Legitimate companies will not ask for money to deliver a prize.
  • Never wire money to anyone with whom you are not familiar.
  • Never purchase a pre-paid debit card for anyone you are not familiar with.
  • Don't provide anyone with personal information such as bank account, pin numbers, or Social Security numbers.
  • Contact your local authorities to report a phone scam.

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