GEORGETOWN, DE: Don’t be like the autumn leaves this season and fall for the latest telephone scam.
That’s the message from the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office, which advises the public to be on the lookout for yet another telephone scam making the rounds. In the latest ploy, scammers are calling local residents, going so far as to ‘spoof’ the department’s telephone number and use the names of the sheriff himself, as well as current and/or former deputies, all in an attempt to make the ruse look and sound authentic. Scammers tell call recipients that a warrant for their arrest has been issued for failing to respond to a subpoena in a medical malpractice lawsuit. In order to avoid arrest, however, the scammer gives would-be victims the option to process the matter civilly, rather than criminally, by paying a fine by credit card over the phone.
It’s the latest in a series of scams that have popped up in the area as recently as this summer.
Sussex County Sheriff Robert Lee’s office reminds the public that deputies will never solicit citizens by telephone or email to collect funds, fines, or fees. Additionally, contact by the Sheriff’s Office always will be made in person whenever subpoenas or other court-related documents must be delivered to citizens.
To assist the public, the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office provides the following tips to anyone who encounters a scammer:
- Try to obtain the caller’s name, a physical address and a telephone number, as well as the name of the organization represented;
- Do not give sensitive or personal identifying information, such as Social Security numbers, bank account numbers, passwords, addresses, or dates of birth;
- Do not give any money, and do not agree to any terms or conditions;
- Hang up and directly contact the agency in question to verify any claims;
- Contact local law enforcement to report any suspected scam.
For more information, contact the Sussex County Sheriff’s Office at (302) 855-7830.