Laramie residents are being warned about a phone scam featuring phony sheriff's deputies or police officers demanding payment for supposed fines.

That's according to a post on both the Albany County Sheriff's Office and Laramie Police Department Facebook pages. Similar scams have been reported in Cheyenne and Rock Springs, and the phony cop scam is one of the most common scams nationwide.

The Scammers Are Taking Steps To Make the Con Believable

The local scammers are adding a few twists, to make the con more believable. Those include a caller who:

* refers to the community member by name,
* tells the community member the call is being recorded, and
* tells the community member they missed a court appearance or jury duty.
The callers also sometimes "spoof' a phone number to make it show up on caller ID as being from a legitimate law enforcement agency, and they may use the name of an actual deputy sheriff or police officer.
But one huge red flag is the fact they ask for payment on some sort of gift card. Con artists frequently do that, but no law enforcement or government agency in the United States accepts payment for fines with gift cards.
Neither the Albany County Sheriff's Office nor the Laramie Police Department calls people on the phone about supposed fines. By the way, that includes local, state, and federal governmental agencies.
Another common scam across the country is demanding payment for bogus back taxes over the phone. The Internal Revenue Service, as one example, always attempts to contact people via registered mail, not with a phone call.
Any Albany County resident who falls prey to a phone scam is being encouraged to file a report by calling the Albany County Sheriff’s Office's Non-Emergency line at (307) 721-2526.
The sheriff's office also offers the following advice to protect yourself from scammers:
* Never give personal or financial information to an unsolicited caller or email.
* Be suspicious of callers who demand immediate payment for any reason.
* Stay private. Regularly update privacy settings for social media sites. Scammers often make their stories more believable by trolling for personal information on Facebook, Twitter, and similar sites.
* Remember that anyone who has the number on a prepaid card has access to the funds on your card
* Never wire money, provide debit or credit card numbers to a stranger.

Historic Wyoming Hotels

Wyoming's once wild west also incorporated a little luxury. Several fine hotels dotted the state, along trade routes and railroad lines. They have rich histories, and of course, ghost legends.

Gallery Credit: Nicole Sherwood

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