New phone scam has targeted Clermont County residents

Beware the next incoming call, it could be a scam. According to detectives in two Clermont County police departments, at least three county residents in the past few months have been hit by a phone scam that, if successful, could cost the victim hundreds of dollars.

Detective Scott Blankenship of the Union Township Police Department said that there have been two victims that have come forward about the scam in his township.

“We had two victims in our township, and it appears that Pierce Township had one,” said Det. Blankenship. “There are some similarities, one being that they stated that a family member or friend had been involved in an auto crash and they gave them a number to call starting with *72. We have the number they were asked to call. When they called back, the perpetrators would clone the phone number being called from. I believe Pierce Township traced their call back to the Cook County Jail in Chicago, and I believe ours may be from the same area.”

According to the detective, the plan is simple, if the execution is not. The victim gets a call that is geared to convince them to call a number that is given to them. The number begins with *72, and is designed to give the person on the other end access to their long distance calling service. The criminal is then able to make long distance calls that are charged back to the victim. In this case, it is believed that the perpetrators are actually already in jail, and are completing the scam with the help of someone they know who is on the outside.