Woman falls victim to aggressive phone scam
Aggressive scam artists could be calling you, your friends, even your boss, using just enough information to get your credit card number.
Think it couldn't happen to you? Think again. Investigators in Hendricks County say it has already happened there quite a bit over the past year.
In the world of mortgage lending, one plus one always equals two for Angie Alexander.
"Money is my thing. I mean, that's what I do for a living. I loan people money," she said.
That's why Alexander knew something just wasn't adding up when her family and even her work got calls leaving voicemail messages saying, "This message is an attempt to locate an individual by the name of Angie Alexander. If you have any information regarding this defendant's location, you are urged to call our office immediately or pass our contact information on the defendant."
The calls claimed Alexander was about to go to jail for owing $1,000. So Alexander called an 800 number to straighten it all out.
"They just answer their phone investigations," recalled Alexander. "They referenced a lot of personal information."
So much information, like former addresses and old bank accounts that Alexander thought they might be legitimate.
When Alexander wasn't willing to fork over her credit card number to pay her supposed debt, though, she recalled the caller said, "Go ahead and go down and pick up Angela Alexander. She's at her place of employment and listed my employer's address."
She got a voicemail a few minutes later.
"Mrs. Alexander, perhaps you thought that this was something that was going to be overlooked, ma'am. Go ahead and get your bond money together, we're going to go ahead and send the sheriff on out there," the female caller said.
"Of course, my mind's spinning and I'm thinking they're sending a police officer to my place of employment to pick me up for something I don't even know about," said Alexander. "I called them right back and, at this point, I just wanted it resolved. I immediately say, 'Okay, I'm going to pay it. She said, 'Do you have the money to pay today?' and I said, 'Yes, I do.'"
Just like that, Alexander had given her credit card number to a stranger.
"They had me in such a tizzy, that I easily gave it and thought I was going to jail," she said.
Fortunately for Alexander, her bank saw a $1,000 charge come through an hour later and put a hold on her account.
Alexander filed a police report, calling the 800 number back to let them know. That's when she says the woman on the other end swore at her.
"To step away from it, it's comical now," said Alexander. Even though she admits she was crying at the time and these kinds of scammers are no joke.
Alexander lives in Hendricks County and investigators there say it's difficult to nail the scam artists because the numbers they use are always different and aren't connected to an address.