phone scam

Phone scams have been spreading and infecting areas all over the country, according to reports from the FBI, the BBB and the IRS, and the Southeast Texas community has not escaped the effects. Prior reports from The Examiner have warned of the scams reported in Jefferson and Jasper Counties. Now, Orange County reports they too have numerous reports from victims of phone scams in which the callers represent themselves as a part of the county's law enforcement agency, the Orange County Sheriff's Office.

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The Dirty Dozen is compiled annually by the IRS and lists a variety of common scams taxpayers may encounter any time during the year. Many of these con games peak during filing season as people prepare their tax returns or hire someone to do so. One of the most commonly used last year and this year is a phone impersonation scam.

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The Texas Office of the Attorney General (OAG) has opened a criminal investigation into an apparent identity theft ring that is claiming to be either a governmental or debt collection agency in an attempt to steal state residents’ personal information and identities.

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Echoing caution expressed in recent weeks from the Jefferson County Sheriff's Office, Orange County Sheriff Keith Merritt is warning local residents to beware of phone scams going on in the area. 

According to information from the Orange County Sheriff's Office (OCSO), with the holiday season in full swing, con artists are resorting to their old tricks to try to get folks to part with their hard-earned dollars.

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Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office is warning Southeast Texans about a new “spoofing” scam active in the area, and said residents should be suspicious of any phone calls they might receive with “Jefferson County Courthouse” showing up as the name on the caller ID.

Caller ID spoofing allows a caller to masquerade as someone else by falsifying the number that appears on the recipient’s caller ID display; originally used by collection agencies, it was outlawed in 2010.

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A scammer identifying himself as a sheriff's deputy is targeting the elderly in Jefferson County, the sheriff's office reports.

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