Man impersonating law enforcement to scam Norfolk residents
From WAVY-TV 10:
The Norfolk Sheriff’s Office said they are seeing phone scams more often, and now scammers are using the latest and greatest technology to swindle money.
“It’s heartbreaking to see (that) people do get taken advantage of because they are well-intentioned people,” said Cpt. Mike Imprevento, officer in charge of the Consumer Protection Unit.
The first scam is a man who identifies himself as Lt. Dan Glade with the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office.
The person over the phone said you have a warrant for your arrest or a fine for failing to go to court.
The scammer said you can resolve it by purchasing a MoneyPak from Green Dot Bank.
In reality, it’s all a lie.
“The whole MoneyPak card is a big red flag,” Imprevento said. “The fact that it’s purchased at specific locations like Food Lion that’s a red flag.”
That’s not the only way scammers are trying to get money.
“You might receive a call your son or grandson was in a car accident and arrested for DUI,” Imprevento said. “They actually have another person involved that calls and makes believe they are a lawyer and that you have to pay the bail money.”
He said artificial intelligence is making it easier to make the story believable
“They know from Facebook, they know from social media, they know sometimes from identity theft (and) they know who you are and who your family is,” Imprevento said. “It sounds scary but they know just enough to pique your interest.”
He said you’ll never receive a call from an official agency like that.
“You’ll never be contacted in this way by the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office or any official agency of the state or federal government. It simply doesn’t happen,” he said.
Imprevento said the activity is being traced back to Eastern Europe, which makes it hard to track down the caller and prosecute them.
As a reminder, the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office will never call residents an ask for money and does not use MoneyPak as a form of payment.
Here are a few tips to help residents avoid falling victim to this scam:
- Be suspicious of callers who demand immediate payment for any reason.
- Government agencies will never contact you demanding payment with a MoneyPak card.
- Never give your MoneyPak card number or receipt information to someone you don’t know.
Victims of this scam are advised to report it to the Norfolk Sheriff’s Office at https://norfolk-sheriff.com/fraudwatch.