Celebrating 20 Years in Business • 2004 - 2024

How to Recognize a Scam

Nearly everyone has received an email, text or phone call that sounds legitimate but is a scam. Scammers have gotten quite sophisticated, and even savvy individuals have been taken in. As reported in the FBI’s Internet Crime Report, more than $10 billion in losses from online scams were reported to the FBI in 2022, the highest annual loss in the past five years. There were some surprising findings in the report; people over 60 accounted for $724 million, or more than two-thirds of the reported losses from call center fraud. Call center fraud occurs when scammers call someone impersonating tech support or government agencies. Another surprise was that people in their 30s filed the most fraud complaints in 2022.

Being the victim of a scam can be costly and is certainly unnerving. According to the Federal Trade Commission, the five top commonly reported scams in 2022 were imposter scams; online shopping scams; prizes, sweepstakes and lotteries; investment-related scams; and business and job opportunities.

Red flags to watch for

Here are five red flags that may indicate someone is trying to scam you:

  1. Government agencies such as the IRS and the Social Security Administration generally use the U.S. Postal Service to contact taxpayers. If you receive a suspicious call, text, email, social media message or letter from someone claiming to be from a government agency, hang up or ignore the message.

    You may wish to confirm it was a potential scam by calling the agency on their official phone number and speaking with an agent. The same is true if you believe the scammer pretended to be from a company or a nonprofit organization. Call and ask whether they sent the communication.

  2. Scammers often call with an urgent request. It is easy to be ruffled if someone calls saying a family member has been in an automobile accident and needs money immediately, but it is equally important to take a minute before reacting.
  3. If an offer sounds too good to be true, it probably is. Whether the offer is for goods or services, trust your gut when it comes to responding to an offer. Job offers that require purchasing product and sweepstakes that ask for payment before the prize is revealed need to be investigated before sending money.
  4. Be sure to carefully check the spelling and the domain of the email address. Scammers often spell things incorrectly. For example, “Amazon” may appear as “Amazn.” It is easy to miss a mistake like that because you think you are reading “Amazon.” Similarly, an email may come from “amazon.net” rather than “amazon.com.” These errors and others like them are clues that the email is a scam.
  5. Payment methods must also be vetted. Requests that require payment via PayPal, Venmo, Zelle, etc.; gift cards; prepaid debit cards; cryptocurrency; or wire transfer likewise must be questioned and investigated. Scammers use these forms of payment because they are hard to trace.

Steps to take if you suspect a scam

Take these steps even if the scammer has personal information that makes the scam seem real:

  1. Do not respond emotionally. Take the time to think through the situation.
  2. Never click on any links or attachments.
  3. Never disclose personal information such as a Social Security number, a bank routing number, savings or checking account numbers, or investment account numbers.
  4. If you are unsure if a request is legitimate, contact the company directly to verify.
  5. Let others know about the scam so they do not fall for it.
  6. Report the scam to the Federal Trade Commission, local law enforcement or the state attorney general’s office.

The bottom line? Develop a healthy skepticism, and don’t respond to any unsolicited mail before researching the source.


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Emily Gooding

Payroll Specialist

Emily is graduating in May with a BA in Business Administration from Lander University. She has gained valuable experience as a payroll intern for BMW. We are so excited to have her on the team and  to see her excel in her role as a Payroll Specialist.

Madison Capps​

Payroll Specialist

Madison received a BS in Psychology from Southern Illinois University in 2019. Since then, she has been working as a supervisor at Starbucks and earning her second degree, a BA in Administration and Accounting, from USC Aiken in the fall. She will be joining us as a Payroll Specialist and a valuable addition to our Paysmart team.

Kristen Wilby

Payroll Specialist

Before moving to South Carolina with her husband, Kristen worked as a Sales & Marketing Specialist for Premium King in Feasterville, PA, where she gained valuable experience in strengthening the brand and generating new business. Kristen also brings to our team several years of professional experience as an Executive Assistant and as an Office Manager, where she was first introduced to payroll. Kristen’s knowledge and her innate ability to establish genuine relationships contribute greatly to the team as we continue to grow and serve our clients.

Meg Whitaker

Payroll Specialist

Meg brings nearly twenty years of professional experience to the team. Most recently, she worked as a Payroll & Benefits Specialist in Centennial, Colorado. She and her husband recently moved back to the Carolinas for his job, and we were fortunate to find her! Before Colorado, Meg worked at CPI Security Systems in Charlotte, NC, for twelve years as a Billing Coordinator and Senior Administrative Assistant. She also gained three years of experience as an HR Assistant for a law firm in Fayetteville, NC. Her expertise significantly adds to our team and benefits our clients as we continue to grow!

Rachel McClaran, EA


Rachel plays a crucial role in developing Paysmart’s core processes and procedures, as well as overall strategy within the company. Rachel graduated from Bob Jones University and is an active member of the Junior League of Greenville and the South Carolina Association of CPAs. Her desire to serve her community has led her to become involved with several nonprofit organizations and to serve as the past Vice President of Finance for the Junior League of Greenville. Outside of the office,Rachel enjoys spending time on the water and traveling with her husband and their two children.

Hina Rogers

Payroll Specialist

Hina joined the Paysmart team in August 2022. She grew up in Portland, Oregon, before moving to Greenville, SC. She earned both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in education. After college, she represented her alma mater as an enrollment counselor in the Southeast and Western states. She enjoys traveling, road trips, cooking, and quality time with her family. Hina looks forward to serving your company’s needs! 

Sharon Quantrille

Payroll Specialist

Sharon has spent several years in the accounting industry and has completed courses to hone her skills as a Payroll Specialist. Her background as an educator, professional musician, and Human Resources Generalist has contributed to her communication skills, commitment to professionalism, and organizational skills that make her a tremendous benefit to her Paysmart clients and colleagues. A graduate of Bob Jones University with a B.S. degree in Music Education, a Master of Music degree in Piano Performance and a Human Resources Generalist Certificate, Sharon spends her free time gardening, hiking, playing the piano, and spending time with her four adult children.

Haleigh Bates

Payroll Specialist

Haleigh joined our team in May of 2022 as a payroll specialist. Haleigh has over eight years of experience helping personal and small business clients with their financial needs. She received her Bachelor’s Degree from Georgia Southern University. She enjoys spending time with her husband and their three children, Caden, Addie, and Mason.  She likes to go hiking, spend time at the beach, and volunteer at her church in the children’s ministry. 

Courtney Rossello

Payroll Tax Manager

Courtney joined the team at Paysmart Payroll Services in September 2020.  She was raised in Simpsonville, SC, and graduated from Clemson University in 2009 with a bachelor’s degree in political science and a concentration in public administration.  Courtney began her payroll career in 2011 and currently works in the payroll tax department at Paysmart.  She strives to make every client feel comfortable knowing their payroll taxes and tax returns are handled accurately and efficiently.  Courtney is also a volunteer Treasurer for a local middle school in Greenville County.  In her spare time, she enjoys volunteering with special needs children, road trips, and spending time with her two daughters. 

Emily Hargrave

Senior Payroll Specialist

Emily received her bachelor’s degree in music from West Coast Baptist College. Since her college days, Emily has gained nearly 18 years of experience in office operations and project management. Emily joined Paysmart in 2017 and enjoys using her skills to support clients and the Paysmart team.

 At heart, Emily is a small-town country girl from the Midwest but is happy now to call the Upstate home, where she doesn’t have to endure harsh winters. Emily’s favorite ways to spend her free time are reading a good book, challenging herself with puzzles, and doing her best not to kill the plants in her garden.

Julie Shull

Client Success Specialist

Julie is the Client Success Specialist for Paysmart Payroll.  She joined the team as a Payroll Specialist in March of 2020. She received her Bachelor of Science degree from NC State University and earned an MBA from Gardner-Webb University while playing on the GWU women’s tennis team. After starting her career with Wilson Sporting Goods as a Financial Analyst, she took a few years off to raise twin boys until she began working for Greenville County Schools in 2014.  Julie enjoys spending time with her family and outdoor activities.

Brad Detandt

Payroll Administrator

A graduate of Northland International University with a BA in Counseling, Brad Detandt leads the day-to-day operations of the Paysmart team. He is eager to grow the firm’s client portfolio. He brings a diverse employment background in retail, manufacturing, nonprofit ministries, and business development, with
a specialized focus on team development and process improvement. Brad’s professional – and personal – mission is to “Be Great. Serve!” Brad enjoys spontaneous activities and weekend trips to state parks with his wife Miranda and his three children.

Stephen C. Stokes

Managing Partner

Stephen has more than 14 years’ experience working with individuals and businesses to meet their tax, accounting, and payroll needs. He has been the managing partner of Paysmart Payroll Services since January 2009. He is a licensed certified public accountant in South Carolina and Georgia. Stephen is also a member of the South Carolina Association of CPAs, the Georgia Society of CPAs, the American Institute of CPAs, and the Professional Association of Small Business Accountants. He has a bachelor’s degree from Bob Jones University and a master’s degree from Georgia State University. Stephen was born and raised near Atlanta, Georgia and moved to Greenville, South Carolina, several years ago. He enjoys spending time with his wife, Tiffani, and daughters, Madeline and Julianna. He is actively involved in his church and enjoys reading, sports, and other outdoor activities.