Holmes County Sheriff Zimmerly would like to warn area residents of a paving scam. The group will often go door to door offering to do paving work, usually on driveways, with "left over" asphalt that they will sell at "half price" to the intended victim. The material used is often re-milled asphalt and although it appears to be good, the thin layer of asphalt will begin to degrade in a matter of days. They often quote a price that seems too good to be true and ask for more money when the job is complete. - Issued by the Holmes County Sheriffs Office 8/25/17
Your phone rings. You recognize the number, but when you pick up, it’s someone else. What’s the deal?
Scammers are using fake caller ID information to trick you into thinking they are someone local, someone you trust – like a government agency or police department, or a company you do business with – like your bank or cable provider. The practice is called caller ID spoofing, and scammers don’t care whose phone number they use. One scammer recently used the phone number of an FTC employee.
Don’t rely on caller ID to verify who’s calling. It can be nearly impossible to tell whether the caller ID information is real. Here are a few tips for handling these calls:
- If you get a strange call from the government, hang up. If you want to check it out, visit the official (.gov) website for contact information. Government employees won’t call out of the blue to demand money or account information.
- Don’t give out — or confirm — your personal or financial information to someone who calls.
- Don’t wire money or send money using a reloadable card. In fact, never pay someone who calls out of the blue, even if the name or number on the caller ID looks legit.
- Feeling pressured to act immediately? Hang up. That’s a sure sign of a scam.
If you’ve received a call from a scammer, with or without fake caller ID information, report it to the FTC and the FCC
- by Andrew Johnson | Division of Consumer and Business Education, FTC.
Think Before You Click!
Beware of phishing attempts.
What are the latest scams and how can you protect yourself?
- Be on the lookout for "Shipping Problem" emails that look like they are coming from FedEx, UPS or the US Mail. The email claims they tried to deliver a package from a particular company (for instance Apple Computer) but could not, due to an incomplete address. They instruct you to "Please click on the link to correct the address and you will get your package." DO NOT CLICK ON THE LINK. If you do your computer is likely to get infected with malware, which is software or an application designed to steal data or compromise your system. Warn everyone in the family, especially teenagers.
- Watch out for alerts via text message to your smartphone that appear to be from those same companies; FedEx, UPS or the US Mail. You will be asked to "confirm delivery" by providing them with personal information. Do not reply or enter any information.
- Another newer scam involves a fake refund that appears to be coming from a major retailer. DO NOT CLICK ON ANY LINKS within this type of email. The email states there was a "wrong transaction" or similar words and asks you to "click for refund" but instead, your device will be infected with malware.
As we always recommend - "Think Before You Click!"
If someone you don’t know wants to pay you by check but wants you to wire some of the money back, beware! It’s a scam that could cost you thousands of dollars.
Account Hijacking & Identity Theft
The fastest growing form of identity theft is Account Hijacking, and can it have devastating effects. Account hijacking occurs when a criminal obtains your personal banking information and uses it to take over your bank accounts. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to protect yourself.
Online Banking, Data Security & You
Online banking has grown rapidly into a major new way to bank. Some surveys show more people prefer to bank online than in the traditional ways. This phenomenal growth has been accompanied by increases in the safety and security measures undertaken by banks and their customers. But cyber-criminals are always looking for new ways to electronically break into the bank and steal your money.