Press Releases

Southwest Station

Posted on: October 11, 2023

Scam Warning Involving Cryptocurrency

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Riverside County Sheriff-Press Release

Reporting Deputy: Sergeant Joe Narciso

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The Southwest Sheriff Station is seeing an increase in phone scams that are targeting residents of Riverside County. The most recent incidents have scammed the victims of tens of thousands of dollars. Many of the scams involve the suspect convincing a victim to convert currency into cryptocurrency and send the cryptocurrency elsewhere, which tends to lead out of the country. Some of the scams give the false belief the victim is investing in a new cryptocurrency. Once the money is sent outside of the United States, it is very difficult for investigators to track down and recover.

We are asking the public to be aware of the following:

  • Never give out personal information such as name, date of birth, social security number or bank information to unsolicited callers.
  • Never respond to an unsolicited email asking you to confirm personal information such as bank accounts or passwords.
  • If someone calls claiming you have a warrant out for your arrest, hang up and call Riverside County Sheriff at (951) 776–1099 to verify.
  • If someone calls claiming you owe money to the IRS, hang up and call your local IRS office. Law enforcement agencies, including RSO, and the IRS will never accept wire transfers, money orders, Bitcoin, other cryptocurrency, or gift cards as payment.
  • If someone calls claiming a family member has been involved in an accident or arrested, call a family member and confirm that this is true. Never wire money or pay someone with gift cards before verifying the information.
  • If somebody wants you to deposit cash into a kiosk-like ATM machine for crypto transactions, it is most likely a scam.
  • Never trust the number that appears on your caller ID. Technology allows fraudsters to fake the caller ID information.

If you have become the victim of a scam or to report fraud, contact (951) 776–1099

For media inquiries regarding this incident please contact the Media Information Bureau.

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