Mississippi community warned of surge in phone scams, checks being stolen from local mailboxes

Published 4:47 pm Tuesday, April 16, 2024

A surge in scams and an increase in checks stolen from local mailboxes are being reported in one Mississippi community.

The Adams County Sheriff’s Office warned residents about a surge in phone and internet scams targeting unsuspecting victims in the area. Investigator Ruston Cavin reported to The Natchez Democrat that the department had received several reports of similar-type scams over the past week, where individuals are contacted by someone claiming to be a Microsoft spokesperson.

The scam involves the perpetrator alleging that child pornography has been detected from the victim’s IP address, prompting them to call a provided number to report a potential hacker or identity theft. Fortunately, according to Cavin, vigilant family members have intervened in some cases, recognizing the suspicious nature of the calls or emails and preventing their loved ones from falling victim to the scam.

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In addition to these tech-related scams, Cavin also highlighted another concerning trend in the area: an increase in checks being stolen from the mail. Over the past six weeks, the Sheriff’s Office has received reports of six or seven instances of checks being stolen.

To safeguard against falling victim to such scams, Cavin offered practical advice to residents. He urged individuals to avoid sending checks through the mail and instead opt for safer payment methods such as money orders. Furthermore, he emphasized the importance of never divulging personal information in response to unsolicited phone calls or emails. Cavin advised residents to be cautious and skeptical of any requests for sensitive information, noting that legitimate organizations typically do not request such details via phone, email, or text. He also warned against clicking on links in emails, recommending that individuals verify the authenticity of communications directly through trusted sources.