A new, growing phone scam reportedly masqueraded as a law enforcement agency and attempted to swindle money from unsuspecting victims.
Indiana residents reported a growing number of scam calls to their state police, a spokesperson for the department stated. The new scam calls attempted to threaten victims into paying lump sums of money to the fraudulent caller.
The Indiana State Police (ISP) “receives numerous reports of phone scams each year, but this particular scam involves using the ISP General Headquarters phone number,” the spokesperson said.
The scammer used a caller ID showing “Indiana State Police” and the corresponding number, 317-232-8248. The caller then identified themself as an Indiana State Police trooper.
The scammer told the victims they had pending drug charges in Texas and threatened citizens with arrest if payments were not made, the spokesperson said.
“The ISP would never call and ask for or demand any sort of payment for any reason whatsoever,” the spokesperson informed.
“Scammers are persuasive, convincing, and technically savvy,” the spokesperson warned. “Scammers will often play on your emotions and fears in order to get your personal information and money.”
Authorities advised the public to either ignore unsolicited calls from unknown callers or hang up when circumstances become suspicious.
If you have been a victim of a phone scam, you are advised to contact your local law enforcement agency and your bank to stop the payment.
Furthermore, you should never provide your personal information such as date of birth, social security number, or bank/credit card numbers.
“Many of these scammers want you to make a hasty decision and may pressure you to get your money or personal information,” the spokesperson said. “Be aware that transactions made by prepaid card or wire transfer are nearly impossible to recover once sent.”
Awareness, authorities say, is the first step in protecting yourself from falling victim to phone scams.