Phone scammer uses local law enforcement disguise - News, Weather and Sports for Lincoln, NE; KLKNTV.com

Phone scammer uses local law enforcement disguise

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By: Kayla Bremer
kbremer@klkntv.com

Another day and another way that scam artists are looking to make a quick buck off scamming citizens out of their money.

This time, the callers are using local law enforcement agencies as their disguise.

The Lincoln Police Department is looking into a recent scam where a caller claims to be a Lancaster County Sheriff's Lieutenant saying the victim has an outstanding warrant and needs to pay a fine.

"The caller said that because they had a good background check and had no real criminal history that the judge was going to allow them to pay their fine by credit card over the phone and started to try and obtain credit card information and other personal identifiers," Sheriff Terry Wagner said.

Three reports have been filed so far in Lincoln.

Sheriff Wagner says all three potential victims hung up on the caller before giving out their information.

"We do on occasion call people that have outstanding warrants but we are not going to ask for credit card information to pay a fine."

Officials say whoever is responsible for the scam has a southern accent and appears to be calling people at random.

Since the holidays are coming up, this is a good reminder on how to keep yourself safe from scammers.

Nebraska Attorney General Jon Bruning says nationwide, charity scams especially spike during this time of year.

"A real charity is not going to pressure you to make a decision right now on the phone," Bruning said.  "They'll be happy to send you something in the mail, they'll be happy to wait, you know, a while to get their money so if someone's pressuring you that's the first key, or if they initiate the call, that's the second key...you have to be very skeptical of those tactics."

If you get a call from someone claiming to be from the Lancaster County Sheriff's Office, officials say to call them back to confirm it and never give out credit card information over the phone.

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