State’s Attorney Gina Vonderheide would like Shelby County citizens to be aware of a debt collection scam that is on the rise nationwide
Fake debt collectors lead consumers to believe a payment on a credit card or a loan is overdue when the payment may be current. The fake debt collector threatens legal action unless the account is immediately brought up to date by wire transfer, credit card or debit card payment. Some fake debt collectors get illegal access to a consumer’s credit report and may have seemingly accurate information about a consumer’s credit card or loan. Many of these calls have come from call centers in India. Before being shut down, one such call center made 2.5 million calls and collected about $5 million.
No reports of the scam in Shelby County have surfaced but the State’s Attorney believes it is only a matter of time and would like everyone to be on the lookout for this and similar scams.
What should you do if you think a fake debt collector is calling? It’s simple. Hang up and call the creditor back yourself at the phone number the creditor provided in your original paperwork. You can then verify if the loan or credit card payment is overdue or is current.
For further information, or if you are a victim of this scam, please contact Gina Vonderheide, Shelby County State’s Attorney, or your local law enforcement personnel.