Fake emails by government agency imposters are on the rise and are more official-looking than ever. There is one going around right now that is reportedly from “The Bureau of Defaulters – FTC” that claims to be a court notice with your arrest and warrant record attached and then provides you with links to respond to or you’ll be prosecuted for fraud.
Amy Hebert, Consumer Education Specialist from the FTC advises:
1) There is no Bureau of Defaulters and the FTC doesn’t send emails like this to individuals. To learn more about spotting imposters go to Government Imposter Scams.
2) Don’t click on any attachment or links – which of course is very hard not to do –particularly if you are thinking that you are in trouble with the government. Scammers use this scare tactic to try to get you to click on the links … so that malware can be downloaded onto your computer.
3) If you receive an email like this, forward it to [email protected], then delete it.
4) You also can file a complaint with the FTC at ftc.gov/complaint, then visit the FTC’s Identity Theft website. Victims of phishing emails like this could become victims of identity theft, and there are steps you can take to minimize your risk.
The FTC has scam alerts you can sign up for that finds out about the latest scams. Go to consumer.ftc.gov and click on Scam Alerts.
Your best defense is to be mindful of unfamiliar emails at all times and to not automatically open them. If you’re not sure whether an email is real, you can always look up a phone number and contact the court, company, or agency the email claims to be from.
• Citizens Building & Loan, at 229 Trade Street, has been serving the mortgage lending and savings needs of Greer and the surrounding communities since 1907. For more information visit CB&LGreer.com.