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City Manager's Office
City Manager's Office
Press Contact: Andrew Frankel, Sgt/PIO, (510) 981-5780


Berkeley, California (Wednesday, January 17, 2018) - The Berkeley Department is alerting community members about an ongoing telephone scam where crooks are attempting to extort money from unsuspecting victims.  On January 16, 2018, the Berkeley Police Communication Center received over a dozen calls from community members regarding what they perceived to be a scam.  A person or persons with a heavily accented voice called claiming to be Berkeley Police Officers and threatened to arrest them if they did not pay them.

These scammers are using a technique referred to as "Caller ID Spoofing."  This is the practice of causing the intended victims' telephone network to show that the call came from somewhere other than its true origination.  According to the intended victims, the calls all appeared to be coming from a BPD number.

The Berkeley Police Department is not making these phone calls They are part of a scam.  Members of the community are urged to avoid giving personal or financial information over the phone.  If they receive an unanticipated call from the Police Department, they can always ask the officer for a call back number and then call the Berkeley Police Communication Center (510-981-5900) to verify the identity of the alleged caller. 

If you have become a victim as described above, you are encouraged to call the Berkeley Police Communication Center to report the crime at the number listed above.




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