Sioux Falls Police are cautioning sending money to what appears to be a friend on social media after a woman was scammed out of thousands of dollars from someone she thought was her friend on Facebook.

According to Sergeant Shaun Olsen, the woman said she received a Facebook message from her friend, using a profile picture of that friend. The message detailed winning money, but that gift cards and cash were needed as a fee to get the winnings in hand.

After losing thousands of dollars, the woman realized she had been scammed and contacted police who continue to investigate.

Police say if you are contacted through social media by someone who appears to be a friend, use an alternative method to contact that person and verify. "Make sure you know who you're talking to." Olsen cautioned.

Initial reports did not specify the exact amount of the money lost or the age of the Sioux Falls woman.

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