Triad woman warns of ‘Ukraine’ email scam

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HIGH POINT, N.C. -- Charity Jackson has been checking in with her family and friends letting them know she's safe.

“I am OK,” Jackson said. “My business is OK. My house is OK. Everything is OK."

It's a message she's been sending since last Thursday when her AOL email account was hacked.

An email went out saying she was stranded overseas and needed money.

"It's been a nightmare ever since," Jackson said.

The bogus email states that Jackson had been mugged while on vacation in Ukraine.

It goes on to say that she needs $1,350 to pay her hotel bill and to get back to High Point.

It also says she could only be reached by email.

"It's caused some undue stress with my family, my friends," she said.

The whole time Jackson was in High Point where she owns a coffee shop.

“I felt very violated,” she said.

Jackson says no one sent any money, but some were about to.

"It was believable because I’m always traveling," Jackson said.

She often travels to different countries as a missionary.

“I've been to Africa,” she said. “I've been to Europe. I've been to Mexico."

Kevin Hinterberger, CEO and president of the Better Business Bureau of Central North Carolina, sees it all the time.

"When people hear about folks in distress, typically what they want to do is help that individual and sometimes they may not think first before they send the money," Hinterberger said.

Hinterberger says if you get a phony email from someone you know, call the person directly.

If it's bogus, delete it, according to Hinterberger.

"Do not interact with these folks,” he said. “Don't engage with them. They are trying to rip you off."

Jackson says whenever she does take her next trip, she’ll make it known.

"I will let my family and friends know," Jackson said.

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