The Arapahoe County Sheriff's Department recently warned Coloradans about a scam that's making the rounds at various King Soopers locations throughout the state, including a Greeley store.

According to law enforcement, thieves are placing fake barcodes on gift cards that are for sale at these grocery stores. What happens, is that when a person then buys the gift card and activates it, the money is actually added to the scammer’s personal card instead of the card being purchased.

After a local woman bought a $500 Visa gift card only to discover there were no funds on it she reported it. Following that, gift cards with fake barcodes were then located by police at a King Soopers store in Centennial.

An employee at one of the King Soopers in Greeley commented on the Arapahoe County Sheriff's warning, noting that fake barcodes have recently been reported at her store's location too.

Another resident explained that this crime happened to her when she purchased an Amazon gift card at King Soopers, and also what a disaster it was trying to get the company to credit back her account.

The Arapahoe County Sheriff's Office offers some valuable tips on how to avoid this situation. Residents can protect themselves from scammers by examining the back of a gift card before buying it. This includes checking for signs of tampering, like barcode stickers, as well as making sure the gift card’s barcode number, that's visible through the window on the back of the packaging, matches the number on the packaging itself. Additionally, law enforcement suggests consumers select a gift card from the middle or back of the rack since they are less likely to have been tampered with.

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