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September 26, 2018
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Scammers Pose as JCSO Employees, Use "Spoof" Phone Number (Photo)
Julie Denney
/ Categories: Press Releases

Scammers Pose as JCSO Employees, Use "Spoof" Phone Number (Photo)

JACKSON COUNTY, Ore. -- Phone scammers are at it again, posing as Jackson County Sheriff's Office employees in an effort to trick citizens into sending them money. JCSO received several reports of scam attempts on Monday, March 5, 2018.

The scammers were reportedly men with Southern accents who identified themselves with the names of actual JCSO employees. The callers were aggressive, telling citizens they missed a court date and have a warrant for their arrest. The scammers offer to clear the warrant if the citizen provides payment over the phone.

The scammers were using a "spoof" program to change the caller ID to the same phone number as the Jackson County Sheriff's Office. If a person returns a call to the number on their caller ID, it goes to JCSO. On Monday, JCSO personnel fielded calls from several people who received scam calls. In one case, a man reportedly lost $3000 when he purchased prepaid cards at a grocery store and provided the numbers over the phone to a scammer -- before calling JCSO to check it out.

As a reminder, JCSO employees will never call people to demand payment for any reason. If a person has a warrant for their arrest, a deputy will not call the person to tell them. A warrant cannot be cleared over the phone. To clear a valid warrant, a person must go to court or turn him/herself in at the jail.

Deputies are providing the following tips to help people avoid scams:
* Don't answer the phone if you don't recognize the number
* Be wary of people claiming to be police officers or other government officials
* Be wary of callers who claim you have a warrant or owe money
* If you have questions about the identity of a JCSO employee calling you, call our main office at (541) 774-6800 to verify
* Share scam prevention information with your friends and family

Remember --
* It is easy for scammers to find your name, address, and phone number on the internet
* It is easy for scammers to learn the names of government officials by searching websites and news stories
* It is a red flag if someone asks to be paid with prepaid cards (Green Dot or MoneyGram, for example), gift cards, or money transfer
* If you work at a retail outlet, be helpful - ask questions if a customer is buying large quantities of prepaid cards
* Scammers frequently target seniors, but will take money from anybody

When it comes to scams, prevention is the key. Once you provide payment to a scammer, it is virtually impossible to get it back. The scammers are often located in other states or countries. They use technology and other tactics to avoid detection and apprehension.

For up-to-date information on common scams, check out the Federal Trade Commission website at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/scam-alerts. If you have fallen victim to an internet scammer, file a complaint with the FBI at www.ic3.gov.

Follow this link for more information and to download JCSO senior scam prevention materials: http://jacksoncountyor.org/sheriff/News/ArtMID/4325/ArticleID/251199

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