Sheriff's Office warning: beware of unsolicited phone calls

Deputies from the San Mateo County Sheriff's Office are warning residents to be wary of unsolicited phone calls that make demands for payment and include a threat of consequences -- such as arrest or prosecution -- if payment is not made.

The Sheriff's Office notes, in a July 22 statement, the three scams that are current:

■ The caller claims to be a deputy sheriff and demands a fee in connection with a failure to appear for jury duty, threatening arrest if the fee is not paid using a prepaid card.

■ The caller claims to be from the Internal Revenue Service and threatens prosecution if back taxes are not paid.

■ The caller claims to represent Pacific Gas & Electric Corp. and threatens a power shut-off if an unpaid balance is not paid immediately.

None of these organizations demand payment from the public by way of unsolicited phone calls, deputies say. Their advice: Do not provide anyone with personal information such as Social Security numbers and credit card numbers unless you are initiating the call.

People who think they have been victims of a scam should contact their local law enforcement agencies.

Go to this link to report an IRS scam.


Like this comment
Posted by Agnes Brydges
a resident of Atherton: Lindenwood
on Jul 27, 2014 at 11:27 pm

A strange sounding man called me one day last year asking me to help an official of the South African government free up some funds that were owed to him. He suggested that my friends from church and I each contribute a certain sum, so that we could pay a fee of $160,000 to those criminals who were holding the funds. Each of us were to receive a bonus, over and above our original investment, as gratitude for helping release the funds owed to this official from the South African government. I told him I would have to ask my son to look into this, and I never heard anything more from him. We who are over a certain age must be careful of what my son refers to as con artists.

Don't miss out on the discussion!
Sign up to be notified of new comments on this topic.


Post a comment

Posting an item on Town Square is simple and requires no registration. Just complete this form and hit "submit" and your topic will appear online. Please be respectful and truthful in your postings so Town Square will continue to be a thoughtful gathering place for sharing community information and opinion. All postings are subject to our TERMS OF USE, and may be deleted if deemed inappropriate by our staff.

We prefer that you use your real name, but you may use any "member" name you wish.

Name: *

Select your neighborhood or school community: * Not sure?

Comment: *

Verification code: *
Enter the verification code exactly as shown, using capital and lowercase letters, in the multi-colored box.

*Required Fields

Food Party! 420
By Laura Stec | 5 comments | 1,315 views

What Are Your Gifts that Must Be Shared?
By Chandrama Anderson | 1 comment | 482 views


Readers' Choice ballot is here

It’s time to decide what local business is worthy of the title “Almanac Readers' Choice” — and you get to decide! Cast your ballot online. Voting ends May 29th. Stay tuned for the results in the July 19th issue of The Almanac.