Scammers target Metro Detroit residents who were impacted by storms, flooding: Here’s what to watch out for

BBB says to ignore texts, links you don’t expect

Thousands of Metro Detroiters dealt with storm-related problems over the summer. If you had to trash any big items, you could be the target of a new scam.

DETROIT – Scammers are targeting thousands in Metro Detroit who dealt with storm-related problems over the summer.

The thieves have been contacting residents via text message and making them think they could be forced to pay up for previous trash pick ups.

It’s just an elaborate scam to steal identities.

Many people reached out to Local 4′s Consumer Investigator Hank Winchester with their concerns after receiving the messages.

Many Metro Detroit residents put water damaged trash out on the curb this summer after severe flooding. There were extra trash pick ups all over Metro Detroit and thieves are trying to cash in on that.

Read: More scam coverage

The text is a complete scam. The scammers are trying to get people’s personal information to steal their identity.

Melanie Duquesnel, with the Better Business Bureau, said any links, texts and emails you don’t recognize should be ignored.

In Detroit, you can avoid fines by calling the Department of Public Works in and arranging for a special pick up.

If you receive a text warning you that you could be hit with fines because of storm-related trash, know that it’s a scam and something you should ignore.

Read: Complete Help Me Hank coverage

About the Authors:

Hank Winchester is Local 4's Consumer Investigative Reporter and the head of WDIV's "Help Me Hank" Consumer Unit. He works to solve consumer complaints, reveal important recalls and track down thieves who have ripped off metro Detroiters.

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.