INDIANAPOLIS — The published public phone number of 317-232-8248 for the Indiana State Police General Headquarters in downtown Indianapolis was “spoofed” during the last 24 hours.
As defined by TechTarget, caller ID spoofing is a service that allows a caller to masquerade as someone else by falsifying the number that appears on the recipient’s caller ID display.
Just as email spoofing can make it appear that a message came from any email address the sender chooses, caller ID spoofing can make a call appear to come from any phone number the caller wishes.
People reporting the spoof calls have stated their caller ID displayed the phone number of 317-232-8248 and the person calling identified themselves as being with the Indiana State Police.
From the complaints, which have been from across the country, it has been reported the caller usually has what is described as “a thick Indian accent” but not necessarily all the time.
The imposter then begins asking for personal identification information or makes threats alleging the person being called will be arrested if they fail to comply with requests made during the phone call, police said.
Fortunately a number of potential victims became suspicious of the call, hung up the phone, and then dialed the number displayed on their caller ID, police said.
This put them in touch with the true Indiana State Police and allowed them to report the criminal action of impersonating a police officer.
Anyone receiving an unsolicited phone call from a person alleging to be a law enforcement officer, or other form of government official should be suspicious of the call if threats of arrest are made or personal information one would not normally provide to a stranger is asked for.
State troopers reminded residents to never give personal information to the caller. Such personal information to never give over the phone to an unverified caller would include:
Bank account numbers
Social Security number
Credit card numbers
Any other close personal information on yourself or other family members.
When an unsolicited call comes to your home, business or cell phone and has the common factors of being threatening and demanding money, be assured that it is a scam, police said.