Mass. FFs warn of fake T-shirt sale scam that purports to benefit first responders
The text messages, fire officials say, impersonate the “friends of” groups that support town fire departments
AUBURN, Mass. — First responders across Massachusetts are warning residents to avoid a scam text message claiming to be running a t-shirt sale to benefit local fire departments.
The texts, fire officials say, impersonate the “friends of” groups of towns’ fire departments and offer limited edition t-shirts to support the firefighters.
On Wednesday, the Auburn Fire Department shared an image of a yellow t-shirt with a kneeling firefighter on it. The shirt featured the emblem of the department with text that said, “stand for the flag, kneel for the fallen.”
These shirts are NOT endorsed by @auburnmassfire. This appears to be a scam that other departments have been reporting as well. Please retweet & share this. Contact your local dept. to be sure if it comes from a source other than their social media. #SCAM pic.twitter.com/7RWAXTDKLZ— Auburn Fire Rescue (@auburnmassfire) November 3, 2021
Nearly identical t-shirt designs have been sent to residents in Spencer, Belchertown, Grafton and multiple other towns around the state. The shirts mostly only change to match the logo of the local fire department.
The text messages appear to also shift only to reflect the town the scam is targeting. In Grafton, for example, residents received texts saying, “Friends of Grafton Fire Department Tshirt (Limited Edition),” with a link to a website.
Nearly all departments have said that neither they nor their supporting organizations are selling any apparel.
“If you receive this text, please do not respond and delete the message,” Grafton officials said.
In Lunenberg, the fire department promised, “Lunenburg Fire will not contact you to buy anything.”
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