That's Not the FBI Calling You

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Scammers are using the FBI's phone number to con victims over the phone. - IMAGE VIA FBI
  • Image via FBI
  • Scammers are using the FBI's phone number to con victims over the phone.

Don’t worry, the feds aren’t calling you.

Scam artists are dialing up potential victims, using spoofing software to make it look like calls are coming from the FBI in Missouri, authorities say.

The fraudsters use bogus threats of arrest or an investigation try to strong-arm their targets into coughing up money and information.

“These are old scams that keep evolving with a new twist,” said William Woods, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI St. Louis Division. “Just remember, the FBI does not call or e-mail private citizens to demand money or threaten arrest.”

The elaborate ruse is similar to one reported last October, when people posing as the FBI targeted college students, claiming the victims were late paying student loans, taxes or parking tickets.

In other versions of the scam, crooks say they’re from other agencies, such as the IRS or DEA.

The FBI in St. Louis asks anyone targeted by the con artists to call the office at 314-589-2500. Victims can also file a complaint online with the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center.

We welcome tips and feedback. Email the author at doyle.murphy@riverfronttimes.com or follow on Twitter at @DoyleMurphy.


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