Local News

Phone scam that threatens safety of loved ones hits Central Pennsylvania

With so much of your personal information online, Pennsylvania State Police are saying there’s a new kind of threat. And people in York and Perry Counties have been targeted. At least six people have been hit by the phone scam that originates in Puerto Rico. The caller says that the person’s relative has been hurt in an accident… or worse. Pennsylvania State Trooper Rob Hicks says “we have seen cases we’re they’ve even threatened that they have a gun to the loved ones head and they’re threatening to kill them.”

Aside from York and Perry Counties, victims have also been reported in Philadelphia. But troopers say it’s happening across the country. Trooper Hicks went on to say “what they’re trying to do is give you the shock value. Make it sound convincing so you may jump to a rash decision and send the money immediately.”

Usually the caller asks for as much as $2,000. In one incident the caller knew the victim’s brother’s name, work location and cell phone number. Troopers say that with so much of your information online you can never be too careful.

Troopers Hicks says “people’s information is out there. You have the Facebooks, the Twitters a whole bunch of online shopping. And I know these websites claim to be secure and most of them are but a lot of these criminals are pretty smart and they know how to hack into that stuff.”

Troopers say to change your online passwords frequently. And if you get a call like this report it rather than pay. Because you never know who’s on the other end of the line.


1 Comment to “Phone scam that threatens safety of loved ones hits Central Pennsylvania”

    Joe said:
    December 11, 2013 at 4:37 PM

    Only the stupid among us fall for this. They deserve to lose their money. Unless you're famous or super rich, nobody is going to hold a relative for ransom. Then, it wouldn't be for a mere $2K. If you're that gullible, just do yourself a favor and don't answer the phone.

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