‘Spoofing’ means a caller deliberately falsifies the telephone number and/or name relayed from his phone so that phony information is displayed on the call receiver’s Caller ID system.
It is against FCC rules when done with the intent to defraud, cause harm or wrongfully obtain anything of value. Violations are punishable by up to $10,000 per incident.
Two Westlake residents have received suspicious phone calls which appear on Caller ID to originate from 440.871.3311, which is the Westlake Police Department main number.
The first occurred on Feb. 19 wherein the female caller, “Mimi,” claimed to be a Westlake Police officer looking for the call recipient’s son; the son does not live there. “Mimi” then told the recipient that she would come to home in 45 minutes; she did not.
The second occurred on Feb. 21. A Westlake man reported that he received calls and messages from “David Lane” of Westlake PD requiring him to pay money or an arrest warrant would be issued for him.
The victim’s Caller ID again showed the originating number to be 440. 871.3311.
One of the voicemail messages directed the second victim to contact “officer” John Harris at (717) 889-1003. “David Lane” also called again (this time calling himself “Michael Brown”) and told the recipient that the Dept. of Justice has pending check fraud charges against him.
This advisory is to alert the public of the misuse of Westlake PD’s phone number and that no police agency will ever call to demand money or other valuables.
Violations of the Truth in Caller ID Act of 2009 can be reported at http://www.fcc.gov/complaints.