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Posted on March 4, 2018 at 7:21 PM by Craig Johnson
Lately at the sheriff’s office, we have been receiving many phone calls about scams. I have been receiving some phone calls on my cell phone lately that shows it to be coming from a local cell phone number, but when I answer, it is from out of the area and a recording. Don’t rely on caller ID to verify who is calling. Scammers can use fake caller ID information to trick you into thinking they are someone local, you trust, or a company you do business with. I recently had a citizen call me stating they had received a call from my cell number and I had not called them. Last year I was receiving phone calls from a number that showed it was one of my deputies calling me and when I answered, it was a recording for a lower interest rate on my credit card.
One of the scams going on in our area right now is the Imposter Scams. When you receive a call and the caller states that they are someone else, like your grandson or relative. They state your relative is in jail and needs money to bond out. It is the scammer trying to scare you into sending money. Scammers can search the internet for people they are calling and look up information about you to find out who you are related to. They will use that information to try to get you convinced to send money. Scammers sometimes pretend to be government officials to get you to send them money. They might promise lottery winnings if you pay “taxes” or other fees, or they might threaten you with arrest or lawsuit if you don’t pay a supposed debt. Regardless of their tactics, their goal is the same: to get you to send them money. We’ve had a lot of these scams going on in the area lately. In fact one of my deputies just received one threatening to throw him in jail.
- If you get a strange call from the government, hang up. If you want to check it out, visit the official (.gov) website for contact information. Government employees won’t call out of the blue to demand money or account information.
- Don’t give out, or confirm, your personal or financial information to someone who calls.
- Don’t wire money or send money using a reloadable card. In fact, never pay someone who calls out of the blue, even if the name or number on the caller ID looks legit.
- Feeling pressured to act immediately? Hang up. That’s a sure sign of a scam.
Put all your phone numbers on the National Do Not Call Registry. (www.donotcall.gov) If you still get calls they are probably from scammers ignoring the law. Hang up, and report them at the same web address. If you suffer a loss from a scam, don’t be embarrassed to call us to report it. We will document it and try our best to identify the perpetrator and do what we can to help you.
And if you have any questions or comments, feel free to contact me anytime, e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org, or stop by to see me.
Thanks and be safe,
Sheriff Mike Tschirgi