(KXNET) — Up and coming company junior executives and new employees are urged to be wary of unexpected email requests purportedly from the company CEO.

In one scam, the “CEO” emails an employee, telling that person he or she is in a meeting and needs to employee to run out and buy gift cards for a giveaway or incentives or as gifts.

The CEO says the company will reimburse the employee for the amount spent of the cards.

Once the employee has the cards, the “CEO” asks the employee to scan the front and back of the cards with each card’s PIN number showing and send the scans to an email address.

Once that’s done, the “CEO” is no longer heard from — until the employee later goes to get reimbursed for the purchases.

The real CEO doesn’t have a clue to what the employee is talking about and the employee is out what was spent on the cards.

The amount spent on cards ranges from $50 to $1,000, based on reports from people who have received the scam email.

The scam often targets new employees who know the least about the CEO and are most likely to carry out the request.

It is also aimed at junior executives looking at the request as a way to curry favor with the boss.

Scam experts say, if you receive such an email to ignore it, or verify the request by sending a separate email to the CEO’s company email address — don’t click “reply” in the scam message. Chances are, the CEO will deny having sent the gift card request. You’ll likely earn positive marks for showing you’re “scam savvy” and save yourself a lot of money.

The scam was reported circulating in North Dakota in 2021 and has apparently surfaced again. It has been in circulation in the U.S. for several years.