Ad Spot

DEA warns of scammers impersonating employees

The Drug Enforcement Administration urges its DEA-registered practitioners and members of the public to be cautious of telephone calls by scammers posing as DEA employees attempting to defraud and extort victims, according to a press release. The schemers call the victims, spoofing DEA phone numbers in order to appear legitimate, and threaten arrest, prosecution and imprisonment for supposed violations of federal drug laws or involvement in drug-trafficking activities unless victims pay a “fine” over the phone, via wire transfer or through a gift card.

The reported scam tactics continually change but often share many of the same characteristics. Callers use fake names and badge numbers or names of well-known DEA officials and may:

• Use an urgent and aggressive tone, refusing to speak to or leave a message with anyone other than their targeted victim.

• Threaten arrest, prosecution, imprisonment and, in the case of medical practitioners, revocation of their DEA numbers.

• Demand thousands of dollars via wire transfer or, in some instances, in the form of untraceable gift cards taken over the phone.

• Falsify the number on caller ID to appear as a legitimate DEA phone number.

• Will often ask for personal information, such as a social security number or date of birth.

• Reference National Provider Identifier numbers and/or state license numbers when calling a medical practitioner. They also might claim that patients are making accusations against that practitioner.

It is critical to note that DEA personnel do not contact practitioners or members of the public by telephone to demand money or any other form of payment, will not request any personal or sensitive information over the phone, and will only notify people of a legitimate investigation or legal action via official letter or in-person.

Impersonating a federal agent is a violation of federal law.

The best deterrence against these bad actors is awareness and caution, the release stated. Anyone receiving this type of call from a person purporting to be with the DEA should report that contact using the online form or by calling 877-792-2873. DEA registrants can submit the information through “Extortion Scam Online Reporting” posted on the DEA Diversion Control Division’s website at www.DEADiversion.usdoj.gov.

Reporting these scam calls will help the DEA stop, find and arrest the criminals engaged in this fraud. Anyone with urgent concerns can call their local DEA field division. For contact information for DEA field divisions, visit www.dea.gov/domestic-divisions.

Health Updates

Daily COVID-19 update: No new cases in 4 area counties; double-digit deaths statewide

Cops, Courts & Fires

DEA reports significant increase in counterfeit pills in Minnesota

Cops, Courts & Fires

2 cited after report of fight and other reports

Elections & Campaigns

Martinez the likely DFL candidate to face Bennett

Elections & Campaigns

Lee and Herman lead primary results for county District 5

Elections & Campaigns

Omar tested in Minnesota; Smith, Lewis win Senate primaries

Elections & Campaigns

Unofficial Freeborn County primary election results

Featured News

5 things to do this week

Elections & Campaigns

Hagedorn meets with business leaders, law enforcement officers in Albert Lea

News

Fishing duo takes second

News

Salt deliveries signal winter preparations have begun

News

Toastmasters Club elects new officers

Cops, Courts & Fires

Prosecution rejects rookie argument by ex-cop in Floyd death

Cops, Courts & Fires

ATF: Fire that destroyed St. Paul hotel project was arson

Cops, Courts & Fires

Convicted killer pleads guilty to Minnesota husband’s murder

Elections & Campaigns

Biden selects California Sen. Kamala Harris as running mate

News

City to spray for mosquitoes

News

County considering travel policy for employees

Gophers/NCAA

Big Ten pulls plug on fall football amid COVID-19 concerns

News

Sons of Norway meeting tomorrow

Health Updates

Daily COVID-19 update: No new cases reported in 3 area counties

Cops, Courts & Fires

Police body camera video of Floyd arrest released to public

News

States strain to carry out Trump order on unemployment aid

Cops, Courts & Fires

3 cited after fight and other reports