Maryland Attorney General Douglas F. Gansler is alerting residents of the state about scammers trying steal bank account numbers and other personal identifying information.

The scammers are able to mask the number they are calling from, preventing recipients from learning the source of the call. Consumers who attempt to call back the number from which the call originated, or retrieve it through caller ID, are directed to the Mediation Unit Hotline number for the Maryland Attorney General’s office. This practice is known as caller ID spoofing.

"This scam is particularly deceitful and hits too close to home as our office would never call consumers and ask for their bank account information," Gansler said. "It’s always a good rule of thumb to be vigilant with your personal information so it doesn’t fall into the wrong hands."

Gansler’s Consumer Protection Division also has heard from consumers who have received a call from a debt collector who claimed to be calling on behalf of the Attorney General’s office. The Attorney General’s office does not employ any debt collectors and does not solicit consumers.

Officials caution Marylanders who receive unsolicited phone calls from any individual or business to be careful and not provide personal information unless the caller is known and reputable. Even then, consumers should ask why the information is needed and what it will be used for.

Consumers with questions about how to handle such inquiries or those who think they have been the victim of a scam should contact the Consumer Protection Division at 410-528-8662 or toll free at 888-742-0023. 

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