TAMPA, Fla. -- There are new phone scams to warn you about.
The U.S. Marshals office sent out an alert regarding people claiming to be law enforcement or court officers telling victims they need to pay a fine for missing jury duty.
Then, just this weekend, the Sarasota Sheriff's Office also sent out a similar warning.
Once you've been victimized, there's really not much law enforcement can do. That's because many times these people are calling from out of the country, so once they get a hold of your financial and personal information there's no telling how much they can steal from you. It is also hard to recover any losses.
Corporal Dan DiFrancesco with the Pinellas Sheriff's Office says the best thing they can do is make people aware of how these things work, so you can protect yourself.
"That's what we want to emphasize is that they are preventable. We can use some practical workshops to educate folks so that these types of things we can at least stop them from happening."
The scammers are even giving badge numbers or names of actual officers or judges to make the calls sound legit. In some cases, they are even spoofing caller ID to make it look like they are calling from the courthouse or police department.
Two important things to remember:
1. They will never ask for payment or financial information over the phone.
2. If you think you've gotten a scam phone call or been victimized by one, report it immediately.
Fraud Awareness workshops in Pinellas County:
Monday, November 13th 11:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.
Sailboat Key Boulevard South, South Pasadena
Tuesday, November 14th 11:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.
Seminold Gardens, Peacock Center
8324 112th St. North, Seminole
Wednesday, November 15th 11:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.
Top of the World, East Activity Center
2069 World Parkway East, Clearwater
Thursday, November 16th 11:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.
Five Towns Community, Magnolia Sun Center
7950 58th Avenue, St. Petersburg
Friday, November 17th 11:00 a.m.- 2:00 p.m.
Highland Lakes Clubhouse
3300 MacGregor Drive, Palm Harbor
In addition to the workshops there will be FREE on-site shred collection from 10:00 a.m.- 12:00 p.m. *Up to 30 boxes/bags. No wet paper, binders, garbage, newspapers or loose cardboard.
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