Scams are constantly happening, and something that everyone has to keep their eyes out for. There are many different types, and it has sadly turned society into a place where you can't trust anyone. Anytime a phone rings or a text message comes through that you don't recognize the number, it is automatically assumed it is a scam, which sadly, isn't the wrong way to think. Emails, credit card fraud, and identity theft are only a few ways that scams are happening, but they aren't the only ones. One scam has been taking place in the Magic Valley and has been successfully duping a few people lately. This scam appears to be coming from local police officers, but it isn't what it seems.

Are Police Scamming Magic Valley Residents?

Over the weekend the Twin Falls County Sheriff's Department released a long statement on their Facebook page, notifying residents of a scam that is occurring in the area. According to the post, someone was sending out messages, pretending to be a local officer in Twin Falls. They notified residents that they needed to pay fines, and even were able to get $1,200 from one person. The problem is that the officer never reached out to any of the residents. A coworker, confirmed with me that she received a similar message, from a different officer last week. As stated above by the Sheriff's Department, this is not how business is handled by officials in the area, and should not be taken seriously. If you question the authenticity of a message from an officer, it is always best to contact the police or sheriff's department to confirm it with them. 

Scams in the Magic Valley

Credit: Carlos_bcn
Credit: Carlos_bcn

Receiving a message from a police officer would seem like a legitimate message, but some rules and regulations must be followed, especially when paying fines in the country and town. It is best to never give personal information over the phone, especially in a scenario like this. While it might be convenient to pay a fine over the phone, in this case, going down to the station would be a smarter way to go to verify that everything is accurate. This is only one scam happening, as there are many more like it taking place around the Magic Valley. You must always be alert, and never trust anyone over the phone, through text, or email seeking personal information from you. For how to best avoid these scams, make sure to read the post by the Sherriff's Department above. 

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Make sure to keep your guard up when receiving messages. Most police officers will not contact you directly, especially if you owe a fine or are due in court. They will go through the proper channels. Similar to this scam, make sure to guard your information and be suspicious of anyone asking for information or numbers or emails you don't recognize or don't commonly communicate with. Be careful out there, because odds are someone will be attempting to scam you soon.

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