23ABC Investigates: Four signs a "Grant Award" phone call is actually a scam

Posted at 4:45 PM, Apr 26, 2017
and last updated 2019-03-15 18:32:55-04

LISTEN IN: Listen to the full audio of the call by clicking the second video above.


Imagine you get a call telling you you’re getting almost $15,000 from the U.S. Grants Department.


Sounds like a dream come true, right? Well, it turns out – it’s just too good to be true.


A 23ABC News viewer told us a man called him saying he was with the U.S. Grants Department and the viewer was selected to receive a grant.


The viewer says he was suspicious early on, so he reached out to us to find out if it was real, or a scam.


We called the number that called the viewer and we said we’d been called. The man on the other end of the line confirmed we had been selected to receive a grant in the same amount as our viewer.


While talking with him, he told us we’d need to buy two iTunes cards totaling $200 to pay for a “registration fee;” that fee would be refunded to us by Western Union and he would give us a “reference code” so we could collect the grant.


The Federal Trade Commission and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services say you will never be asked to pay to apply for or receive a grant from the federal government.


And the only way you’ll receive a grant, is if you apply for one.


If you get a call like this one and you haven’t applied for a grant, scholarship or other lottery, report it IMMEDIATELY to