FBI Richmond Warns the Public of Scammers Using Spoofed Numbers
Adam S. Lee, special agent in charge of the Richmond Division of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) wants to arm the public with information to help prevent them from falling prey to government impersonation fraud scams.
This week marks National Consumer Protection Week. One of the most prevalent scams is when criminals make contact with potential victims using what appears on caller id to be a current phone number for the FBI or other government agency—this is called spoofing. The callers introduce themselves as federal employees and attempt to obtain personally identifiable information (PII); and, by means of fear, intimidation, and threats, demands money to prevent criminal charges or imminent arrest.
The FBI does NOT call citizens requesting money. We also do not send photographs of credentials or badges.
- Never give PII to someone you did not initiate contact with yourself.
- Limit the information you post on-line (including social media).
- Be suspect if the caller requests payment via a third-party – hang up.
- Before signing up for a contest or e-mail distribution list, make sure the business has a policy to not share or sell your information to a third-party.
- Educate yourself (FBI and Federal Trade Commission).
- Report contact to authorities and to the Internet Crimes Complaint Center.