Police: Calls from Officer Brown with Social Security Are A Scam
If you receive a call from "Officer Jason Brown", badge number xxx, with the "Social Security Investigations Office" you probably don't want to give him any personal information. It's the latest scam to hit the Sedalia area.
Sedalia Police say a Sedalia resident reached out to them after receiving a call from a person identifying himself as "officer Brown" from the "Social Security Investigations Office". This person told the resident they were attached to abandoned vehicles in Georgia and Los Angeles in which cocaine was discovered. And then asked for the resident's bank account number, date of birth, the last 4 digits of their social security number, and what vehicle they currently owned.
The resident didn't give "Brown" any personal information and when the caller was pressed to identify where he was calling from, he hung up on the resident. When Sedalia Police Detectives did some investigation they found out it was a spoofed number, which is a phone number that looks like it's a real business, but is not.
Here's the thing, Sedalia Police say that if you get a call from a governmental agency, they will never ask for bank information to confirm your identity. And they won't ask for the type of car you drive to confirm your identity. either.
In most cases, if a governmental agency like the IRS or Social Security has business with you, they're going to reach out to you with an official letter. The same with public utilities like Every or Missouri American Water. In the case of the courts or law enforcement, you're going to be served or law enforcement will just show up at your home or business.
According to the USA GOV website, regardless of what the unsolicited call is about, don't give in to pressure to take immediate action. Don't give your credit card number, bank information, or other personal information to a caller. Don't send money or pay with prepaid debit cards or gift cards.
Additionally, USA GOV says you can protect yourself by registering your number with the National Do Not Call Registry. Hang up on suspicious calls, Be wary of callers claiming you've won a prize or vacation package, especially if you don't remember entering a contest to win the prize. And be cautious of caller ID, because, like in the case shared above, those can be spoofed or faked. Additionally, research business opportunities, charities, and products that are offered to you on the phone.
The bottom line is if something doesn't sound right. If something seems odd. If something is off. Or something seems too good to be true, it probably is.