- FBI: https://www.fbi.gov/scams-and-safety/on-the-internet and www.ic3.gov
- FTC: www.ftc.gov or www.IdentityTheft.gov
- Virginia Attorney General: https://www.oag.state.va.us/programs-initiatives/identity-theft
- How To Avoid Identity Theft – A Guide for Victims is a comprehensive resource. It is a free downloadable booklet of information to avoid being a victim and what to do if you have been a victim.
Fraud and Identity Theft
Fraud: Wrongful or criminal deception intended to result in financial or personal gain.
Identity Theft: The fraudulent acquisition and use of a person’s private identifying information, usually for financial gain.
Nationwide, there has been an increase in victims of fraud and identity theft. According to the Federal Trade Commission, there were 3.2 million reports in 2019 resulting in billions of dollars lost.
The LPD takes fraud and identity theft seriously, as it is a crime with serious impact on the victims and their families, both financially and emotionally. Our agency does weekly public service announcements on social media to increase awareness. These “Fraud Friday” segments focus on current scams and frauds affecting our area, and offer valuable crime prevention tips for our citizens. Additionally, each year the LPD holds an annual scam prevention seminar for senior citizens. The LPD provides free training to groups on a variety of crime prevention topics upon request.
What do I do if I have been a victim of a scam, fraud or identity theft?
What are some tips to stay scam safe and fraud free?
- Legitimate financial institutions or government agencies will never contact you by phone to ask for your information or demand payments.
- Legitimate companies and government agencies do not take gift cards or prepaid credit cards as payment for any services or outstanding bills or fines.
- Never give out your personal information over the phone or online.
- If you are pressured into making a quick decision, threatened in any way, or harassed by a company, hang up the phone and contact the LPD.
- Monitor all of your accounts to check for irregular activity.
- Follow the LPD social media for the latest tips and advice on crime prevention.
What do I do if I have questions about other crime prevention topics?
- See our Crime Prevention page.
- Contact Cindy Kozerow, Crime Prevention Specialist at 434-455-6145.