FLORENCE, SC (WMBF) – The United States Marshals are alerting the public to several nationwide imposter scams. The callers are identifying themselves as U.S. marshals, court officers, or other law enforcement officials. If you receive a call like this, you're asked to report it to your local U.S. Marshals Service office, but also the Federal Trade Commission.
The FTC can detect patterns of fraud from the information collected to share with law enforcement.
The scammers attempt to collect fines for failing to report for jury duty or other offenses. They tell the victims they can avoid arrest by purchasing prepaid debit cards or gift cards to read over the phone to pay their fines.
"The U.S. Marshals would never ask for a credit/debit or gift card number or banking routing numbers or ask for funds to be wired for any purpose," said U.S. Marshal Kelvin Washington "If the caller is urging you to provide this type of information or any other personal or financial information, hang up and report the call to the Marshals and the FTC. You can even report to both agencies anonymously."
Scammers may use tactics to sound credible like fake badge numbers, names of actual law enforcement officials and federal judges, or courthouse addresses. They may also change their phone number to appear as if they're calling from a court or government agency.
If you believe you were a victim of such a scam, you are encouraged to report the incident to your local U.S. Marshals Service office and to the FTC.
Things to remember:
- U.S. Marshals will never ask for credit/debit card/gift card numbers, wire transfers, or bank routing numbers for any purpose.
- Do not divulge personal or financial information to unknown callers.
- Report scam phone calls to your local U.S. Marshals Service office and to the FTC.
- You can remain anonymous when you report.
- Authenticate the call by calling the clerk of the court’s office of the U.S. District Court in your area and verify the court order given by the caller.