Jury Duty Scam on the Rise

Chicago 2010. Weather: Probably snowing. Me: Standing in my kitchen, listening to an automated message, waiting to learn if I would be summoned for Jury Duty. I was psyched. This was my chance and I wanted my butt in one of those seats. Justice! Justice for all! Sadly, my surname failed me that day: they were only taking last names between L-Z. Six years later, I’m still waiting for my chance. *Fingers crossed!*
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Unfortunately, with a new scam floating in our system, citizens are being made to believe that they missed their jury duty summons. Scammers are calling, saying a warrant is being issued for their arrest for skipping jury duty. As jury duty is everyone’s legal duty <<places hand over heart>>, victims of this scam get nervous and have been showing up at courthouses thinking they are going to get arrested.

However, an unnecessary trip to the courthouse isn’t the worst possible outcome in this case. Scammers are demanding credit card information to pay off the “fine” for skipping jury duty. They have also been asking for social security numbers. As noted in Seven Tips to Avoid Call Scams, only give out personal information if YOU are the one who made the call.

It’s pertinent to note that the caller ID on your phone could identify the caller as a legit business. “U.S. Government” perhaps, or “King County Courthouse”. If they’re really sassy, maybe even “Bald Eagle Freedom Ambassadors”. While their ID may look official, if you suspect spam, you’re probably right and should act accordingly. The FTC has a Complaint Assistant where you may register known spammers/scammers. Additionally, there are spam/scam identification apps like Whitepages ID that will alert you if the call is suspected spam.

When in doubt, just Bye Felicia that spammer and block it or hang up immediately.

by Lisa Bowers

Lisa Bowers is a public relations professional who enjoys a healthy dose of sarcasm and wants to improve the mobile environment that affects everyone's daily lives. A Chicago native, she studied Business Computer Systems and still has nightmares about coding exams. Now in Seattle, she loves seeing mountains and water every day and tries to enjoy the PacNW as much as possible.

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