Con artists are targeting athletes with intellectual disabilities. An investigation from our sister station WOWT shows us just how low scammers are going to steal money and more.
Competing in the Special Olympics, Chad Magsamen has earned recognition as a champion with a winning attitude. The Nebraska Special Olympian said, ”It's not about winning or losing. It's about meeting new friends."
But Chad is angry about losing his identity.
While competing in New Jersey, Chad became friends with another Special Olympian who he thought sent him a message about a grant he could use to buy a house. Chad Magsamen said, ”I thought it was friend and it was actually a hacker.”
A con-man who fooled Chad into providing his birth date, social security and bank account numbers. Chad and other with intellectual disabilities are vulnerable to scams.
His mother Lori Magsamen said, “They believe everything, they trust everybody, they’re friends with everybody and so if someone offers them a million dollars they’re going to say that’s real. ”
Lori closed her son's account before scammers withdrew much money but both worry his personal information will be misused.
Chad Magsamen said, ”It's pretty sad to take advantage of people with intellectual disabilities."
If you received a government grant offer from a Facebook friend call or text them before you send money or provide account information. It’s possible their Facebook account has been hijacked by an impostor.