Prisoners serving their sentences have a lot of time on their hands and it appears that many of them are using that time to make a variety of scam phone calls using contraband cell phones smuggled into the prisons. Georgia Attorney General issued a warning about phone scams being perpetrated by prisoners in the Georgia state prisons where more than 1,400 contraband cell phones were confiscated in just the last three months of 2017 and this problem is by no means limited to Georgia. The scams include common phone scams such as calls indicating there is a warrant for your arrest and unless you make a payment over the phone by credit card, you will be arrested; calls indicating that you have missed jury duty and will be arrested or phony bill collection calls, often for utility bills where dire consequences will follow unless you make a payment over the phone. These phone calls may even look legitimate because it is a simple matter for the scammers to use apps to “spoof” another telephone number so the call may appear on your Caller ID as if it is originating with the local police, court or utility company.
Whenever you receive a phone call, you can never be sure who is really calling you which is why you should never provide personal information such as your Social Security number or your credit card number to anyone that calls you. If there is a real warrant for your arrest, you cannot resolve it by making a credit card payment over the phone. Courts do not call prospective jurors about missing jury duty and will not ask for personal information such as your Social Security number over the phone to confirm your identity. That is the realm of identity thieves. As for utility companies, they will not be threatening to turn off your service immediately unless you make a payment over the phone. If you believe you may owe a utility bill or any other bill, merely hang up and call the real company at a telephone number that you know is accurate to find out the truth.