HACKENSACK, NJ - The Bergen County Sheriff’s Office has received complaints regarding a recent “open-warrant” phone scam, it announced on Monday. Several residents have received phone calls from individuals perpetrating this fraud who claim to be Sheriff Officers with the “Division of Warrants and Citations” at the Bergen County Sheriff’s Office. The scam call advises potential victims they are in contempt of court for “failing to appear” for an outstanding summons, resulting in a warrant being issued for their arrest.

The Bergen County Sheriff’s Office is aware of the scam and it is currently under investigation. 

“While the Bergen County Sheriff’s Office is responsible for issuing warrants, the office does not have a ‘Division of Warrants and Citations.’ It is very important to know that law enforcement and government agencies will never ask for money over the phone. If you receive this phone call hang-up immediately and notify the Bergen County Sheriff’s Office,” said Sheriff Anthony Cureton.

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The Bergen County Sheriff’s Office advises residents to do the following if you receive this call or a similar attempt:

  • Do not give out personal information or identification over the phone.
  • Never provide your credit card number or bank account information to an unsolicited caller.
  • Do not say anything if a caller starts the call asking, “Can you hear me?” This is a common tactic for scammers to record you saying “yes.” Scammers record your “yes” response and use it as proof that you agreed to a purchase or credit card charge.
  • Hang up immediately if you are asked to wire money or pay with a prepaid debit card.

Anyone who believes they may have been exposed to this or a similar type fraud is asked to contact either the Bergen County Sheriff’s Office at 201-646-2222, text your tip to 274637 (CRIMES), or to contact your local police department.