Saturday, October 01, 2005

Jury Duty Telephone Scam

On Wednesday, the FBI issued a warning about a new identity theft scheme. Fraudsters identifying themselves as employees of a court call telling people they have been selected for jury duty and ask them to verify their names, date of birth and social security numbers. In another version of this scam, they call and will claim you didn't show up for jury duty. Again, they try to get your personal information and sometimes credit card numbers, also. They are alleged to be very convincing and even threaten their intended victim(s) with fines and legal action for not complying.

I did a search of the news and noted local stories in Arizona and Virginia about this scam, also.

According to the FBI, "The judicial system does not contact people telephonically and ask for personal information such as your Social Security number, date of birth or credit card numbers. If you receive one of these phone calls, do not provide any personal or confidential information to these individuals."

"This is an attempt to steal or to use your identity by obtaining your name, Social Security number and potentially to apply for credit or credit cards or other loans in your name. It is an attempt to defraud you."

If you are approached with this sort of activity, please report it to your local FBI field office, which can be found at

Identity Theft is a crime costing the U.S. (alone) 53 billion dollars a year and claims roughly 9 million victims. Here are some tips from the FBI on how to avoid identity theft:

  1. Never throw away ATM receipts, credit statements, credit cards, or bank statements in a usable form.
  2. Never give your credit card number over the telephone unless you make the call.
  3. Reconcile your bank account monthly and notify your bank of discrepancies immediately.
  4. Keep a list of telephone numbers to call to report the loss or theft of your wallet, credit cards, etc.
  5. Report unauthorized financial transactions to your bank, credit card company, and the police as soon as you detect them.
  6. Review a copy of your credit report at least once each year. Notify the credit bureau in writing of any questionable entries and follow through until they are explained or removed.
  7. If your identity has been assumed, ask the credit bureau to print a statement to that effect in your credit report.
  8. If you know of anyone who receives mail from credit card companies or banks in the names of others, report it to local or federal law enforcement authorities.

1 comment:

Big D said...

This is total BS! You are gettting took in the battle by the Housewife mafia. All the Anti-Housewife Mafia members are nursing hangovers.