Uncertain? Hang up on alleged FBI Agents
Roseville, Calif. – The Federal Bureau of Investigation Sacramento Field Office (FBI Sacramento, located in Roseville) is cautioning the public to be wary of any unsolicited call, especially if the caller claims to be from the FBI.
“Nothing sends a person into a panic like a call from law enforcement, especially when the call informs them that they have been a victim of a crime or may be wanted for a crime,” explained Acting Special Agent in Charge Dennis Guertin. “Sadly, that response is something scammers are leveraging with increased frequency, so it is important to educate the public about what to look out for.”
Scammers are sophisticated and any unsolicited call, text or email can be a path for a scammer to attempt to gain your trust and separate you from your hard-earned money.
To ensure your security and safety
- Never click on links contained in unsolicited emails or texts. The links may route you to fake websites or deploy malicious software on your phone or computer.
- Never trust the caller ID number; the displayed telephone number can be manipulated with software.
- Never be afraid to hang up on an unsolicited caller.
- Always consider sending unsolicited phone calls to voicemail. Most scam call centers will not leave a message.
- Always check the email address of seemingly official communications and feel free to reach out to your bank or credit card company directly by calling the telephone number on the back of your card to verify if the email is legitimate.
Some scammers impersonate FBI agents over the phone. “The public should not be afraid to hang up on an alleged agent. An authentic FBI agent will find other ways to contact you, if necessary,” said Guertin.
An official FBI special agent will never provide you with a badge number or telephone number to attempt to verify their identity without additional verification. Instead, they will direct you to the official FBI website www.FBI.gov to locate the local field office’s telephone number and encourage you to make a call.
FBI will never call or email you to do any of the following:
- Make demands for money, wire transfers, gift cards, or bitcoin.
- Coordinate financial transactions of any kind.
- Threaten arrest.
Reporting scams is an important step to protect yourself and others from victimization. All scams can be reported online on the FBI Internet Crime Complaint Center website, www.ic3.gov, or call your local FBI field office.