Beware the jury duty scam

So you get a phone call from your local courthouse, and it turns out that you've missed jury duty.

And there is now a warrant out for your arrest.

You protest, of course, that you never received a summons in the mail, and this must be a mistake. Puzzled, the sympathetic but still-stern voice on the other end asks you for your social security number and your date of birth, so they can verify who you are, and check to see if a jury summons was actually sent out. If it wasn't, they'll cancel the arrest warrant.

But hopefully you haven't even heard that last part, since you should have already hung up the telephone -- in order to call the police and report that you're being scammed. It bears repeating: NEVER give out your social security number of other sensitive data over the phone.

The scam has been reported lately across America, in at least 11 states, including Indiana, Hawaii, South Carolina and South Dakota -- the con artists apparently are picking people at random across the nation and trying to dupe them out of information that they can use to steal their identity.

It's a scam that's been going on for at least a couple years now, evidenced by this page that the FBI put up almost three years ago, but these calls have been resurfacing in recent weeks. So don't fall for it.

On the other hand, if you get a phone call like that and actually did skip out on jury duty, it's probably best to just wait at your house, let them pick you up and go quietly.
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