Public Safety Notice from the #LongBranchPD Detectives regarding a new phone SCAM reported in our area:
We have received a few calls for a new scam. The scammer poses as a US Customs Agent and provides a badge number. The scammer tells the victim they are involved in a criminal activity and a criminal complaint is being filed. When the victim states that they are not involved, the agent then informs the victim that a US Marshall’s Agent will be contacting them to help rectify the situation. The victim will then be contacted by a scammer identifying themselves as a US Marshall’s Officer. The Officer informs the victim that several bank accounts have been located in the victim’s name associated with the illegal activity previously mentioned. When the victim denies any knowledge of the accounts the Scammer tells the victim that they will flag and delete the fraudulent accounts, but the victim should remove all of their money from their real accounts so that they are not accidentally deleted. The victim is asked to transfer the funds into a temporary account supplied to the victim by the scammer. If the victim complies and transfers money into the account, the victim will then become aware that they do not have access to the account provided to them by the scammer. The victim should immediately notify their financial institution of the transaction as well as the Long Branch Police Department.
These scams are generally not based within the United States and the chance that our investigation is going to lead to the return of the money lost by the victim, or a positive identification of the accused is unlikely. These scams are not singular to the Long Branch area and are a national problem.
Individuals should never supply any personal or financial information to anyone over the phone or electronically unless they are positive the information is being sent to a secure and legitimate source.
These are a few of the easiest ways to protect yourself from becoming the victim of a scam:
– Stop contact with the scammer. (Hang up the phone, Delete/ignore emails, block/delete accounts on social media)
– Check and secure your finances.
– Secure the access to your computer/internet service.
– Do not post personal information on Social Media (Phone numbers, email addresses, home addresses, etc.)
– Change account passwords so that they are unique (names, birthdays, pet’s names, etc. should not be used)
– Report the Scam to the Police.
The Long Branch Police Department will continue to monitor and update its residents about new and evolving scams. Residents are urged to educate themselves about common scams to avoid becoming a victim.