Beware callers seeking bail money, Hampshire Sheriff warns


Published: 6/6/2019 9:07:56 AM

A scammer has been calling people in the Pioneer Valley pretending to be an employee of the Hampshire Sheriff’s Office seeking bail money, Sheriff Patrick J. Cahillane said in a press release.

The scam relies on “phone spoofing” or “caller ID spoofing,” which uses “caller ID spoofing technology to impersonate the phone numbers of local businesses or government agencies in an attempt to acquire money or some sort of personal information,” the sheriff’s office said.

Several residents reported that they had received calls seeking bail money, Cahillane said Wednesday.

“The Hampshire Sheriff’s Office will never, never, call private citizens and demand payment or accept payment of any kind over the phone,” Cahillane said in a statement. “If you receive such a call, the best tactic is to simply hang up.”

Cahillane advised that anyone receiving a fraudulent call might also consider contacting their local police department, filing a report online with the FBI at, or notifying the Hampshire Sheriff’s Office at 413-584-5911.

If you receive a call from a spoofed number, the Better Business Bureau offers these tips:

Hang up – don’t press any buttons and, if you received a voicemail, don’t call the scammer back. We all like to have the last word, but returning the phone call may just give the scammer information they can use.

Don’t trust caller ID – scammers have technology that lets them display any number or organization name on your screen.

Never give out any financial information – if you did not initiate the call, do not provide bank account, credit card or Social Security numbers over the phone unless you have thoroughly done your research and verified the caller.

Daily Hampshire Gazette Office

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