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Credit Scammers Target New Year's Resolutions

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Many people resolve to get in better financial shape at the start of a new year, and that's no secret to scammers.
SPRINGFIELD, Mo. -- Many people resolve to get in better financial shape at the start of a new year, and that's no secret to scammers.

"I thought I was getting off on the right start," Jo Shallah said. 

Shallah, a retired nurse, said getting her finances in order was important to her for the start of 2014. . 

She said she received a company promising to broker her balances and lower her interest rate.

Shallah said the company appeared legitimate. 

"I asked that. How do you make any money if you don't charge a fee? And they had a perfect answer, saying they make money off the interest you save," she said. 

That's why what came next was all-the-more surprising for Shallah. 

"No fee. And then, in fifteen minutes, $595 on two cards," Shallah said. "My cardholder contacting me, saying they had a fraud alert."

She said she was given confirmation codes and phone numbers for customer service representatives. 

When dialing those numbers, however, callers are only met with recorded messages. An online search shows several complaints.

"Scam artists aren't dummies. "They know how to time these things," Judy Mills of the Better Business Bureau. 

Mills said taking advantage of a New Year goal is nothing new -- it's big business. 

"You should never give out any personal information over a telephone call because the only connection you have to that person is the phone," Mills said. 

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