Scammers are resurrecting a classic identity theft scam in more than a dozen states, according to Congressman Eliot Engel (D-NY). The senator reminded consumers never to give out personal information during unsolicited phone calls -- especially involving jury duty.
"The scam works with a phone call in which the caller identifies himself as an officer of the court and says a warrant is out for your arrest because you failed to report for jury duty," Engel said, according to PoliticalNews.me.
"You say you never received a notice. To clear it up, the caller says he'll need some information for 'verification purposes' -- your birth date, social security number, maybe even a credit card number," he added.
"This is when you should hang up the phone," Engel added. "It's a scam. With this information, scammers can assume your identity and empty your bank accounts."
As a rule, court officers do not solicit confidential information over the phone.
In recent months, the FBI has reported a resurgence of the scam in more than a dozen states, including New York, Engel said.
"The scam's bold simplicity may be what makes it so effective," said Rep. Engel. "It puts people on the defensive facing the unexpected threat of arrest, so, caught off guard, they may part with information to defuse the situation."