Authorities are warning people in New Jersey, especially in Hunterdon County, not to fall for a new scam that’s being tried there.

Here’s how the scam works, according to MyCentralJersey: an organization was advertising on social media that there would be three craft fairs, an autumn fair, a Thanksgiving one, and a Christmas one. The ad gave instructions to would-be vendors for the fairs to fill out an application and make an electronic payment. Of course, there were no fairs.

It’s all a scam.

Hunterdon County Sheriff Fred Brown, told My Central Jersey: “Scams have been on the rise and they strike when people are at their most vulnerable, during a pandemic or after a natural disaster, or during the holidays," Brown said. "Residents should do their homework and research a company before sending money to anyone."

The Better Business Bureau is also warning consumers to be skeptical of online fairs that charge admission; these, too, are scams.

They advise researching the events and ask for references before sending any money. They also warn that any business that is hard to reach or doesn’t have a physical address should be investigated further.

Verify their contact information and check the BBB for complaints about the business to be sure you’re dealing with a legitimate event promoter.

Also, any offers of unusual benefits or perks should be viewed suspiciously: if it seems fishy or too good to be true, investigate further.

Sheriff Brown advises people to contact local law enforcement with any suspicious come-ons.

The post above reflects the thoughts and observations of New Jersey 101.5 talk show host Bill Doyle. Any opinions expressed are Bill Doyle's own.

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