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PORTLAND – The U.S. Marshals Service, District of Maine, is alerting the public of a significant increase in Maine residents reporting a phone scam involving individuals claiming to be U.S. Marshals or other Federal Officials. These scams are also occurring in other New England States.

During these calls, scammers are sometimes “spoofing” actual office phone numbers to fraudulently collect money or gain other Personal Identifiable Information (PII) from the victim. The scammers claim to be actual employees of the U.S. Marshals Service and will sometimes even provide actual real names and/or badge numbers of current U.S. Marshal Officials that are found on public, government websites to further appear legitimate. The scammers use many convincing tactics such as threatening legal ramifications if victims do not to comply.

If you receive any calls of this nature, contact the agency in question by calling them directly from a verified official website to authenticate the information. If you believe you were a victim of such a scam, you are encouraged to report the incident to your local FBI office and to the FTC.

Things to remember:

U.S. Marshals will never ask for credit/debit card/gift card numbers, wire transfers, or bank routing numbers for any purpose.

NEVER divulge personal or financial information to unknown callers.

Report scam phone calls to your local FBI office and to the FTC.

You can remain anonymous when you report.

The U.S. Marshals Service urges individuals not to divulge personal or financial information to unknown callers and highly recommends the public report similar crimes to their local police departments. If you believe you are a victim of fraud, report the incident through the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center at www.ic3.gov. Also, you should report online, business, or phone scams to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) immediately at www.reportfraud.ftc.gov.

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