The Columbus Division of Police is receiving multiple reports from victims who are receiving calls from suspects claiming to be with Social Security of law enforcement agencies.
The victims are told a vehicle involved with drugs and weapons crimes was stopped in Texas and the victim’s Social Security Number is associated with the crimes, police said.
The suspects know the Social Security numbers of the victims which cause victims to believe them, police said.
Additionally, the suspects use the phone number of the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office and the Columbus Division of Police to have accomplices contact the victims to authenticate the scam, police said.
Victims are convinced to empty their bank accounts by either purchasing gift cards and providing the numbers to the suspect, electronic transfers to other accounts or even purchasing BITCOINs with the pretense they are protecting their assets, police said.
The suspects intimidate the victims and keep them on the phone during the entire process and demand the victims tell no one about what is happening, police said.
Victims have reported losing a few hundred dollars to tens of thousands of dollars.
Columbus police say a law enforcement agency would never ask you to move or transfer your money to another account.
If you are contacted by someone participating in this scam, file a police report with your local police agency.