Recently, scammers have targeted North Carolina residents with fraudulent texts involving concealed handgun permits. This is reportedly a nationwide scam.
In Carteret County, some residents received text messages that alerted them that their permit needs to be changed or renewed. While in Forsyth County, some residents reported receiving text messages that said, “your concealed carry papers are ready.” Residents were then prompted to click on a link which asked them for their personal information. The link was malicious, and it was not associated with any state agency or sheriff’s office.
These scams use deceptive text messages to your mobile device to try and obtain your personal information in an effort to defraud you. Awareness about the potential for mobile phone scams is often lacking and so criminals are taking advantage.
As with any suspicious text, we encourage you to never click on any link or provide personal information. If you believe you have received a text message that is from a scammer, please report your message online at www.usa.gov/stop-scams-frauds.
The Transylvania County Sheriff’s Office is committed to protecting the personal information of our citizens. To that end, here are a few additional tips to keep in mind:
- Do not assume you will not be a victim.
- Check if the sender is really who they say they are by searching for their telephone number online.
- If you are unsure who a text is from, do not click any links or open any attachments.
- If you receive a text message full of spelling or grammatical errors, it is likely a phishing message.
- Never give out username or passwords, banking or credit card information, or other personal details via text.
- Sheriffs’ offices will never send text messages to request any information from residents.
Source: NC Sheriffs’ Association