The Morton County Sheriff’s Office and the Minot Police Department are warning people of two scams circulating the area.
In Morton County, the sheriff’s office received a report from a woman who says she was the target of a fake kidnapping and ransom phone call.
She says she got a phone call from a Florida-based number while at work.
When she answered someone in the background was crying and upset, yelling for help and saying he was being beaten up.
The caller said they had her son and that she needed to stay on the line, go to Walmart and wire $5,000 to them. The woman’s son does live in Florida and she feared it was legitimate.
Fortunately, the woman’s co-worker made contact with the son and learned he was at work and fine.
Morton County reminds people to be on high alert for:
- Any number that is unfamiliar
- Incoming calls coming from an outside area code
- Calls that do not come from the kidnapped victim’s phone
- Callers go to great lengths to keep you on the phone
- Callers prevent you from calling or locating the “kidnapped” victim
- Ransom money is only accepted via wire transfer service
In Minot, the Police Department’s Crime Prevention Unit received several calls reporting two possible telephone scams.
The first is a group of people identifying themselves as the “Peace Officers Coalition.” THey’re asking for money to pay for safety equipment for law enforcement officers.
Minot PD wants to remind people that none of the fraternal orders or law enforcement agencies solicit money by phone.
The second is a common social security scam where the caller tells potential victims there is something wrong with their social security account. They ask for money in order to prevent benefits from stopping.
Minot PD wants to remind people the Social Security Administration will never call beneficiaries asking for personal information.
Finally, they say the best way to avoid being a scam victim is to simply hang up and not return their calls.