It’s called a con game for a reason.

Thieves establish a sense of confidence in potential victims, claiming they are looking out for their best interests, and truly care for the individuals they’re about to fleece.

That’s what happened to Heather Lee over a period of weeks this summer, when she lost her entire life savings in a scam. But she’s far from the only person to be victimized — a Harris poll report says 59.4 million Americans were subject to phone/internet scams last year. Detective/Sergeant Jack Thilberg said the Shelter Island Police Department are receiving information on phone/internet scams on a weekly basis.

She may be one of many who fall prey to criminals, but Ms. Lee is the rare person who has come forward to discuss what happened to her, Police Chief Jim Read said. He praised her for speaking out to help others avoid the pitfalls and snares that…

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