Ossining police chief puts phone scammer on blast, warns residents to be wary

Posted: Updated:

An Ossining police chief shared his experience with a scam phone call as a warning to residents.

Ossining Police Chief Kevin Sylvester shared a recording on Twitter of his experience with a robocall that he received Monday. He says he took the opportunity to turn the tables on the scam artist.

“The call, first off, notifies me that I'm to be arrested immediately for something to do with Social Security, so I pressed one and figured I'd play along,” says Sylvester.

However, when connected to a representative, Sylvester says the woman couldn't provide him with his own name. Then she hung up.

"One of the biggest problems we have is they tend to target the elderly and people often feel embarrassed or alone, so my objective here is to show people it's happening to everyone," says Sylvester.

 

Octavio Blanco, of Consumer Reports, says these “government impersonation scams” are prevalent and that many people fall for it, leading to the loss of thousands of dollars.

"Any time anybody is asking for money from you or offering money to you, those are red flags,” says Blanco.

The Federal Trade Commission says residents should also be weary of callers who demand payments over the phone. They say this is something the government will never do.

They also say if the caller demands payment through wire transfer or gift cards, it’s best to just hang up.

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