Police in Duxbury, Massachusetts are warning residents of a scam that targets parishioners via email.
Officials received reports of a person using a fake church email address in an effort to receive money or gift cards.
The scammer poses as the Rev. Mally Lloyd of the town’s St. John the Evangelist Church and demands goods that would go towards fighting cancer, according to police.
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Lloyd said the email was only sent to her parishioners making the scam extremely specific.
"It's like a trifecta of indignity and danger," Lloyd said. "Why do they need the money so much that they’re willing to scam people? Is it greed? Is it desperation because they're poor? I don't know, but it’s not right to do it this way."
Police said so far, no one has fallen for the scam. Authorities caution it's the time of year when cyber criminals know people want to give to charities and that gift cards are their go-to.
"It's a cash value for them. It's a $50 iTunes card and they will sell it to someone else for $25," Duxbury Police Deputy Chief Stephen McDonald said.
Duxbury police advise residents to research organizations before making donations to them. They warn that it is common for thieves to pose as false charities with names similar to legitimate organizations.
If you believe you are a victim to this scam, Duxbury police urge you to call them at 781-934-5656.