September 24, 2013

The Latest Phone Scam Invoking Name of Police Department....Don't Fall For It

Yet another in a series of phone scams

In this case, the caller claims to be an attorney representing some interest and claims money is owed to them.  The caller (masquerading as an attorney) makes threats to the victim if the money is not paid. 

When our caller hung up on the pretend attorney, they received a second call.  Here’s the unique twist

The second call showed a caller ID as having come from the Santa Cruz Police Department.  A simple spoofing program can change that information.

This time the caller is a female claiming to be a Santa Cruz Police Department detective.  The fake detective claims she is in the process of getting an arrest warrant, but will halt the process if the victim agrees to pay the owed money.  Unfortunately, our victim paid money. 

First…Let’s be clear….the Police Department does not work in cahoots with bill collectors, and we don’t get warrants for people to assist the bill collectors. 

Next….Police Department phone numbers don’t come up on your caller ID as "Santa Cruz Police Department".  All of our numbers here at the Police Department have a “420” prefix….Yes, we are aware of the irony there!!!

Finally, if you are in doubt, you can always call us back.  Just call our main office line at (831) 420-5810 and we will direct you to the person who is trying to call you.  Or you can simply ask for a call back number and then verify that number with the directory on our Website. 

And the kicker…..Never, Ever, Ever pay someone via a Western Union MoneyGram, or prepaid credit cards.  As soon as you hear those words, your SCAM alarm should be sounding as loud as possible.  Don’t be an easy target for these crooks. 

If you get a call like this, please report it, we’d love to meet the person on the other end.  We have a parting gift of bracelets for them!