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Henry Co. authorities warn residents of scam calls

(WHSV)
Updated: Jun. 17, 2021 at 1:32 PM EDT
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HENRY COUNTY, Va. (WDBJ) - The Henry County Sheriff’s Office is warning residents about a scam in which the caller claims to be an officer with the department.

Authorities said it may appear to be a legitimate phone call by displaying “Henry County Sheriff’s Office” and a local number on the caller ID. The scammer may attempt to obtain personal information or money by falsely claiming that the person’s identity has been stolen, that they have current criminal charges or warrants pending, that the person has a family member who has been arrested or that they have missed jury duty.

The scammer will tell the would-be victim they need to send money immediately in order to clear the issue. They may demand payment with verbal threats and intimidation, the sheriff’s office said. Most often, the scammers will request money to be transferred or wired into an account, but they may also ask for payment in the form of gift cards.

Below are some tips from the sheriff’s office regarding scams:

Be suspicious if you receive an unexpected request whether it comes in the form of a telephone call, text, app message, or an email.

  • Never give out personal information such as credit card or account numbers, Social Security numbers, mother’s maiden names, passwords or other identifying information in response to unexpected calls.
  • Do not send money in any form.
  • Law enforcement will never demand payment over the phone.
  • If you get an inquiry from someone who claims they represent a company or a government agency seeking personal information, hang up and call the phone number on your account statement, in the phone book or on the company’s or government agency’s website to verify the authenticity of the request.
  • Be cautious of Caller ID. Technology has made it possible for scammers to spoof or fake the number they are calling from.
  • If you are being pressured for information or threatened with jail time or fines contact local law enforcement.
  • Telephone scams should be reported to the Federal Trade Commission at ftc.gov.
  • Regularly check your credit score and bank statements for unusual activity.

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