Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Don’t take any calls from ‘FBI agents’

From page B1 | July 10, 2013 | 6 Comments

The El Dorado County Sheriff’s Office is currently investigating a new variation of phone scam that impersonates law enforcement. In this recent case, the caller portrayed himself as an FBI agent who claimed he has discovered you won a prize that was never awarded to you. The scammer then asks for money to be sent to him. To try to convince you to send the money, the scammer will fake a phone call from local law enforcement. In this case the scammer had a second scammer pretend to be Sheriff John D’Agostini. These scammers can be particularly convincing, because they can make the number they called from appear on your caller ID to be any number including that of the FBI.

It is important to remember that law enforcement will never call anyone asking for money, ever. When talking to anyone on the phone it is important to remember that you cannot confirm who they really are. Before giving any financial or personal information you should be positive the people receiving the information are who they say they are. If you are unsure, you can always hang up and call the person yourself at a number you know is a real phone number belonging to the financial institution or law enforcement agency.

In El Dorado County the Sheriff’s Department investigates hundreds of cases annually involving phone and emails scams, but the number of incidents that are not reported is likely much higher. The elderly are more often targeted and can easily become drawn into the scam.


Discussion | 6 comments

  • James E.July 08, 2013 - 6:42 pm

    I guess this scam works with older people who are naive and trusting. A sad thing. Children should do lots of preaching to their older parents about these telephone and mail scams. FBI calling on the phone? Hang up. If the FBI wants you they will come knock on your front door or surround your house and call out "This is the FBI, come out with your hands up." They will not ask for any money upfront.

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  • Phil VeerkampJuly 08, 2013 - 6:48 pm

    But James, after I forked over $10,000.00 to the FBI I've had no problems with my Comcast. Are you saying that the FBI was not messing with me.

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  • James E.July 08, 2013 - 6:53 pm

    Oh, Phil, I'm sorry that I forgot to tell you about the FBI/Comcast scam. Well, at least your Comcast is working now.

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  • cookie65July 11, 2013 - 6:53 am

    Yes James the naïve, trusting older citizens are the targets of many scams. They voted for obama twice. So the Sheriff is the new Ed McMahon? I hope he calls me to tell me I won a million dollars.

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  • cookie65July 11, 2013 - 7:30 am

    Heeeeere's Johnny!!!

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  • CitaJuly 18, 2013 - 12:31 am

    Who would? An FBI calling over the phone is unusual and next to impossible. If I get a call like that, I'd take time to check on the caller by looking up the phone number at The website does not only provide caller details for free but if the phone number has been reported for fraudulent calls before, it would show on the website, too.

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