Guilford County, NC -- If you get a call from the sheriff's office, chances are, it's not really the sheriff's office!
Detective Chrystal Overcash with the Guilford County Sheriff's Department says their fraud department is being bombarded with calls from people who say the sheriff's department has been calling them and claiming the people owe the department money.
"The person on the phone identifies themselves as being with the sheriff's department they then tell them the department is owed money. They are forceful and order the people to go buy a pre-paid credit card."
That should be a red flag right there. A government entity asking for a pre-paid credit card?
But Det. Overcash says the schemers on the phone scare people into thinking something will happen to them if the money isn't paid. She says, NEVER will the sheriff's department call people. If you ever owe the government money, they will send the information in a letter.
Here's what makes this all the more confusing the number being used is the sheriff's department number. How are the crooks doing that? It's called "spoofing".
"Spoofing" is when someone uses computer software or an app and they make it appear they are calling you from another number. It's a masking device and it works well. The best thing to do anytime you are wondering if any call is legitimate is hang up the phone and look up the phone number for yourself. Don't trust the number they give you.