Sheriff John Merchant

I would like to alert the public to a recent scam circulating Brown County.

Residents are receiving text messages on their cell phones stating that their recent AMAZON purchase has been compromised and are given a number to call back to correct the problem. With the popularity of AMAZON recently, several have actually called the number and then realized it is a scam. Of the several who have reported, one resident stated she received an automated message informing her to call another number and one person actually spoke with a real person who tried to verify account and financial information. The resident promptly hung up.

Please do not give out personal information over the phone, scammers always adapt their tactics in order to catch you off guard. One person stated they received an e-mail from someone claiming to be AMAZON and told me that she had not placed an AMAZON order in many months. Please do not reply to these messages and delete.

The social security scam is also circulating again. Residents have been contacted by phone from someone stating they are from the Social Security office and the residents social security number had been compromised and suspended due to a felony situation in another state. The caller is trying to get you to verify your number. This is a scam, Social Security will never contact you by phone for verification. If you receive such a call, hang up immediately.

If you feel you have been a victim of a scam, please report it to your local law enforcement at once. Our county residents work too hard for their money to have these unscrupulous people take it away from them I always advise residents to do the following if you feel you have been scammed:

If it concerns your Social Security number, contact the local Social Security office at once.

If you have given out financial information on your bank account, contact your local bank at once — they will help guide you through the process.

If you have computer access, I also encourage you to report the activity on the Kansas Attorney General website @ ag.ks.gov, go to the “Fraud and Abuse” section and choose from a list of reportable incidents. As always, feel free to contact me if you have any questions.

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