Attorney General Pam Bondi warns consumers of new imposter scam

03/06/2015

Attorney General Pam Bondi warns consumers of new imposter scam

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – March 6, 2015 – Florida Attorney General Pam Bondi has warned state residents about an ongoing scam in which an imposter claims that he represents the Florida Attorney General's office.

Last month, the Attorney General's Office received more than 20 complaints. According to the complaints, the imposter threatens consumers with arrest or legal action if they did not wire money or provide a prepaid debit card.

Now the Attorney General's Office is receiving additional complaints of an individual impersonating the office, but the story is new: These scammers claim the Attorney General's office has settled a case and there is a refund for the consumer.

According to consumer complaints, the caller uses the name Chris Douglas and offers a badge number to consumers. He claims he is with the Loss Prevention Unit or Loss Refund Division, and says he needs a credit card number to order a refund directly to the consumer's account.

Once the consumer gives credit card information, fraudulent charges are made on the card. In other similar cases of these imposter scams, consumers are told that in order to receive their portion of a settlement, they must first pay taxes on it.

Tips to avoid the scam

″ When the Attorney General's Office issues settlement funds directly to consumers, they're issued via check – not credit or debit card transfers

″ The Attorney General's Office does not require advance fees, "taxes" or charges of any kind to process settlements or issue restitution

″ Never give out personal or financial information over the phone

All suspicious telephone calls can be reported to the Attorney General's Office through its website, MyFloridaLegal.com, or by calling 1-866-9-NO-SCAM. Suspicious telephone calls can also be reported to the Federal Trade Commission at FTC.gov/Complaint.

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