NEWPORT — Newport police are warning residents about a phone scam seeking personal information, claiming that the call recipient has committed Social Security fraud.
On Wednesday, police received a call from a Newport resident reporting that he had received three “robocalls” from two different phone numbers that day, claiming to be from a Social Security office and were contacting him about Social Security fraud.
A robocall is a prerecorded message from a person or digital voice that typically prompts the call taker to stay on the line and wait to speak with a person.
Police say the phone numbers the resident received calls from were:
Through the subsequent investigation, it was determined that the calls were scams seeking to get personal information from the call taker.
“Unfortunately, these calls seem to be growing more and more frequent,” Newport Police Chief Seth DiSanto said. “People should never take calls from numbers they that do not recognize and should understand that caller ID may falsely show a local phone number, when in fact it is a scam call coming from another location.”
To help people protect themselves from similar scams, the Federal Trade Commission (FCC) offers several tips on its website, including the following:
Do not take calls from unknown numbers.
Do not share personal, identifying information like Social Security numbers, account numbers, or mother’s maiden names.
If a caller claims to represent an organization and you are doubtful, hang up and contact that agency to verify whether the call was truly from a representative.
Caller ID is not always accurate. A call from a “local” number might not be coming from a local person or organization.
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