Virginia State Police are warning residents of northern Virginia that a phone scammer has spoofed a legitimate State Police phone number and has been attempting to trick people into believing they are a state trooper.
Police said the scammer has called around 50 northern Virginia residents and neighboring states as of Saturday afternoon. The calls come in from a 276 area code, and so residents may initially believe the caller to be legitimate.
According to police, the caller identifies themselves as a representative of the Virginia State Police and tells the individual that they have a warrant out for their arrest.
They then say that the individual can avoid arrest if they make a payment. They may ask for credit card information, bank account details or payment in the form of a gift card.
“The Virginia State Police never calls individuals to notify one of an arrest warrant,” State Police said in a statement. “The Virginia State Police never requests payment for any service, debt, etc. over the phone.”
They said the scammers can get aggressive when demanding payment.
Their advice: Hang up the phone and don’t offer any personal information. If you suspect someone has attempted to scam you, contact your local law enforcement agency.