Scammers may take advantage of the holiday season to steal your money

WSYR-TV - The U.S. Marshals are warning the public of several nationwide impostor scams involving individuals claiming to be U.S. marshals, court officers, or other law enforcement officials. 

They are urging people to report the calls not only to their local U.S. Marshals Service office, but also to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC).

“These are not victimless crimes,” said Denis Donovan, Chief Deputy U.S. Marshal. “People have lost thousands of dollars to these scammers. This can be devastating, especially during the holidays.”

During these calls, scammers attempt to collect a fine in lieu of arrest for failing to report for jury duty or other offenses. They then tell victims they can avoid arrest by purchasing a prepaid debit card or gift card and read the card number over the phone to satisfy the fine.

“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 Donovan. “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.”

If you believe you were a victim of this type of scam, you are encouraged to report the incident to your local U.S. Marshals Service office and to the FTC.

For more information on these calls, or to find out where to report scams to, click here. 


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