Scammers are once again targeting Florida residents with unscrupulous emails and phone calls in an attempt to get their money or personal information.
The Lee County Clerk of Circuit Court and Comptroller wants the public to be aware of these latest scams, which were brought to her attention today by the Florida Supreme Court and the Florida Court Clerks & Comptrollers (FCCC).
The email scam mimics official Florida Supreme Court letterhead and asks recipients for money, according to the FCCC, despite the fact that the state high court never sends out such legal notices via email.
The scam mirrors similar attempts over the last several years, mentioning places in the western Panhandle region of Florida. Many pretend to refer to a Florida case involving inheritances or are “catfishing” schemes in which the scammer impersonates an online dater who is interested in meeting and needs money to pay off legal debts.
The Tampa Bay Times published an article about the topic on Feb. 13, 2019. Questions about this type of scam can be sent, with forwarded copies of the email and attachments, to the Florida Supreme Court, at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition, the FCCC association was alerted that a jury duty scam, which circulated in October 2018, has resurfaced. The scam involves someone calling and stating they are with a Sheriff’s office or a Clerk’s office. The caller then tells the person they have missed jury duty and have a warrant out for their arrest. The scammer states the person must pay a specific amount for the warrant to be dismissed and asks for their personal information, which may include Social Security numbers, birth dates, and credit cards for verification purposes.
These calls should be reported to the Lee County Sheriff’s Fraud line: 239-25-3292. Additionally, Clerk Doggett suggests to visit the home page www.LeeClerk.org and review the information found on the Scam Alert page.