SHERIFF WARNS OF PHONE SCAM
Friday, June 27, 2014 — Cook County Sheriff Thomas J. Dart is warning the public of a phone scam where callers are told they have an active warrant and must pay immediately, or otherwise face arrest.
The Sheriff’s Office has received a number of reports throughout the county that a caller identifying himself as a Sheriff’s employee is telling victims that they have a warrant, and to clear it, they must pay via pre-paid debit cards or through a wire service. The caller implies that an arrest is imminent.
The Sheriff’s Central Warrant Unit does not make notification to those with active warrants over the phone. Also, no legitimate agency will request callers to make payments only via pre-paid debit cards.
- Sheriff Dart offers the following tips to avoid becoming a victim of this type of scam:
- If you believe the call is suspicious, hang up.
- Do not send money to anyone unfamiliar to you.
- Do not give any personal information, such as social security or bank account numbers, over the phone.
- If the caller claims to be from a specific agency, hang up and call that agency to determine if there is a legitimate reason to contact you. Do not use the phone number the suspicious caller gives as the contact number for the agency.
- Cook County Sheriff’s Warrants may be searched at www.cookcountysheriff.org under the Quick Links section.
Sheriff’s Police are investigating. Sheriff Dart asks anyone who may believe they are victim of this scam, or may have information about the perpetrators, to call Sheriff’s Police at 708-865-4896.