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Beware of Telephonic Extortion Scams
Scam artists are looking for myriad ways to run their scam operations and Extortion Scam is a recent addition to their armory of illegal tools. The scam surfaced couple of years ago with fake Debt Collectors threatening to get potential victims arrested and placed behind bars, in an effort to scare them to pay up. The criminal network saw their revenue going up and started concocting variations of the extortion scam.
Variations of Extortion Scam Calls:
- Extortion to collect non existent debt (“You will be arrested”, “You will be jailed”, or “Warrant is out for your arrest”)
- Threat of physical elimination, if money is not paid (‘We have been contacted to kill you” )
- Telephonic threat of arrest by FBI for viewing pornography
- Telephonic threat of arrest by DEA / FDA for drug abuse
- Threat to damage reputation by creating fake profiles with intimate pictures in Facebook and other Social Media Sites
- Calls by scammers followed by infection of computer by Ransomware (Computer screen is locked and shows a bogus FBI page with warning of arrest)
- Fake kidnapping calls (“Your child is being held by us and will be killed him if money is not paid”)
Terry, a hospital worker in Thibodaux, Louisiana was told her little boy has been kidnapped. The caller demanded $1000 to be wired instantly online through Western Union and the phone shall not be disconnected. The caller gave her child’s name, school name and location! Fortunately for Terry, her mother walked in and made calls to confirm the boy was safe.
Steps to Protect Yourself from Telephonic Extortion Scams
- Use a GPS tracker to keep track of your minors (You may use a dedicated device or use smart phone with GPA App)
- Keep a second phone around to use for call / texting in case of emergency
- Do not panic if informed of your impending arrest! Be aware that enforcement agencies do not have power to arrest anyone without physically serving summons and giving you ample time to defend yourself.
- Be calm, cool and think logically, when you receive an extortion call. 99.99% of the time calls will just be hoax, to scare you and make sure you pay up.
- Use an updated antivirus & anti malware program to block Ransomware infection
Report phone numbers of Extortion Call Scammers at Scamcallfighters.com. Let your experience help others from being victims.
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