SIOUX COUNTY, Iowa (KELO) — Authorities in Northwest Iowa are warning residents about a scam appearing across the state.

The Sioux County Sheriff says the scam is referred to as “Distract and Dash.” Authorities say two suspects will approach a shopper.

While one distracts them, the second will go through the shopper’s purse and take credit cards, cash, and membership cards to club stores like Sam’s Club or Costco.

The suspects will then go to those stores and use the credit and membership cards to buy gift cards.

They will then use the gift cards to buy items. Sometimes these purchases can be thousands of dollars.

The Sioux County Sheriff says there are some ways to prevent this “Distract and Dash” scam. They include securing your purse to the shopping cart, keeping your wallet hidden, and reporting suspicious activity.