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BlogScam AlertScam Alert: Police Scams across the world

Scam Alert: Police Scams across the world

Themba Wahlstrom

Mar 26, 20243 min read

Beware of scammers impersonating police officers, especially those using the threat of police action to scare victims into parting with their cash or personal details.

Scammers have been busy this year, and it is being noticed.

Scams involving fake police are becoming common across the world. Scammers know that people can be duped easier when they think the person on the other end of the line is a police officer, perhaps because they fear getting in trouble with the law.

Here are some recent examples of scams involving police impersonators:

‘The Mumbai police has your son’

Recently across India, there have been reports of calls from scammers posing to be from the police. This scam targets parents with older children, where the fake policeman informs the person that their son or daughter has been taken into police custody and a fine or payment needs to be made immediately to release them. This line of messaging is meant to cause panic and hasty decisions, to ensure the safety of the family member. The scam is a variation of the popular ‘hey mom’ scam seen in countries like the USA and Australia.

Do not send any money when being coerced in this way. Look out for an international number. Make sure to first contact your child to confirm their safety. Treat all ‘proof’ of imprisonment like images and videos with caution as these can be faked too.

police car siren

Police Scams in the USA

There are many recent news reports on police impersonation scams in the USA. Just this last week there have been articles from Florida, Wisconsin, Virginia, Ohio newspapers that describe a remarkably similar impersonation scam. 

It goes like this: the scammer tells the person that they missed a court date and need to pay immediately over the phone or they will be arrested. One thing that gives away this scam is that the scammers ask for payment in cryptocurrency, wire transfers, payment apps, or gift cards. 

Nigeria Police Employment Scam

The Nigerian Police Force issued a warning against a fake recruitment portal pretending to be official police recruitment. The portal, "www.policerecruitment.ng," falsely claims to be recruiting for the Nigerian Police Force.

The Police commented that they do not do online recruitment and urged the public to ignore any such claims. They advised job seekers to be cautious and only rely on official announcements through traditional media channels and the police website.

What to do

In general, follow these guidelines when getting a call like these above:

  • Always verify their credentials by calling the official police department.
  • Be wary of unexpected calls claiming to be from the police. Genuine police won't demand immediate action or threaten arrest over the phone.
  • Avoid disclosing sensitive information like bank details or passwords over the phone.
  • Take time to assess the situation and consult trusted sources before acting. Scammers often pressure for quick decisions.
  • Report any suspicious calls or attempts at fraud to the authorities immediately.

How can Truecaller help? Well, there’s our famous Caller ID and Spam Blocking. But there’s also much more. Visit the website and take a look at all our features, and also make sure to check this blog regularly for all the new updates and tips.

Themba Wahlstrom

Mar 26, 20243 min read

Scam Alert

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