Spoofer poses as Summit County sheriff commander
December 17, 2015
The Summit County Sheriff's Office received reports of a caller using spoofing technology to pose as commander Jaime FitzSimons. The scammer has reportedly solicited Summit County residents by saying they missed a court date and a warrant will be issued for their arrest.
Sheriff John Minor said their office had received two reports of the scam in the last 24 hours. In both cases, the recipients hung up before they could be solicited for money or other items.
"They're targeting a specific area using local information to sound more official," Minor said. "Unfortunately, it creates a lot of concern for us because we don't want our citizens to remotely believe that it's us."
The caller reportedly researched personal information, such as names, phone numbers and addresses to convince callers the scam was legitimate. In addition, a callback number similar to a sheriff's office number was left, likely generated using spoofing technology. Websites and Internet phone services make spoofing technology easy to access.
Minor said they were investigating the source of the calls, though it may be difficult to track the identity of the scammer.
"There is a high likelihood, even though this person had a convincing American accent, that it could be originating overseas," Minor said.
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If the Sheriff's Office really issues a warrant for someone's arrest, officers will not release that information over the phone but instead go directly to an address. Residents who receive a spoofed phone call may contact Summit County Dispatch with questions or concerns, at (970) 668-8600.
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