November 21, 2014
Campus Watch: Below is a summary of campus activity reported to or observed by The University Police Department Patrol Officers between Thursday, 11/20/14 and Friday, 11/21/14.
BRAKENRIDGE APARTMENTS, 3350 Lake Austin Blvd
Fraud: A UT student reported receiving a telephone call from a person claiming to be a local police officer. The caller ID on the call did show a City of Austin Police Department number which was no doubt cloned. The caller stated he was working with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on a “back taxes” investigation and that the student needed to pay $2,000.00 in back taxes to avoid being arrested. After the student advised he did not have $2,000.00, the caller turned the call over to another subject who claimed to be an attorney with the IRS. That person demanded the student remain on the line as they worked out a “payment plan” or the student would be arrested for ceasing an “official government call.” Four hours later, the student and the “attorney” – or as I should refer to him, the scam artist – worked out a payment plan in which the student was directed to go to a near-by CVS and obtain three Green Dot cards in the amount of $935.00. Once the Green Dot cards were purchased, the caller demanded the student card access numbers listed on the back of the card. The call was then disconnected. Occurred on 11/19/14 between 12 noon and 4:00 PM.
Crime Prevention Tip:
This is becoming a very common scam. This will continue to be a popular scam until enough people know about it to the point it is no longer effective for the scam artists. That being said, we need to share this scam information with everyone we know so that they do not fall victim to this scam. Please forward it, print and post it, discuss it, Morse Code it, Pony Express it, coffee klatch it, smoke signal it – just spread it out.
This is a scam. The caller uses the fear of arrest to get the victims to comply and purchase Green Dot cards (a form of pre-paid debit cards). Once the Green Dot cards have been purchased, the caller demands the access codes on the back of the card. With the access codes, the caller can make electronic purchases and financial transfers that are not traceable.
To gain the victim’s confidence, the caller will use a cloned police department telephone number and provide identifying information about the victim to the victim. Often times that shared identifying information is simple data found in directories or phone books.
The caller in these cases will keep you on the line until you provide them the Green Dot access codes.
The U.S. Federal Government does not obtain money over the phone via Green Dot cards. If you get a call like this, then all you need to do is hang up and call the police department to make a report. Trust me - if you do owe back taxes, then the IRS will make an official contact.
We have also seen similar scams in which the caller claims to be investigating a tuition violation and demands a money payment through Green Dot card access codes over the phone.
GREGORY GYMNASIUM, 2101 Speedway
Theft: A Lenovo laptop computer and a charging cord were stolen from an unsecured second floor men’s locker room locker. Loss value: $300.00. Occurred on 11/20/14 between 12:30 Pm and 1:30 PM.
JESTER WEST, 201 East 21st Street
Theft: A white iPhone 5 in a bamboo case was stolen after it was left on a sanitary tissue dispenser located inside a women’s restroom. Loss value: $150.00. Occurred on 11/20/14 between 6:00 PM and 6:45 PM.
O’ HENRY HALL, 601 Colorado
Harassment: Several UT System Staff members received unwanted and annoying telephone calls and repetitive e-mails from the same subject - even after that subject was directed to cease communications. Occurred since September of 2014.
PERRY-CASTAÑEDA LIBRARY, 101 East 21st Street
Theft: An Apple MacBook laptop computer was stolen when it was left on a 5th floor study desk while the owner stepped away for a “short moment.” Loss value: $800.00. Occurred on 11/20/14 between 2:35 PM and 2:40 PM.
2100 San Antonio
Consumption of Alcohol by a Minor: A UT Police Officer witnessed two subjects carrying a third subject off of a bus. One of the two “movers” returned to the bus and left while the other remained with the third subject. It was obvious the third subject was unable to stand on his own volition. The third subject was found to be a UT student, who was under the age of 21. In lieu of a public intoxication charge, the student was issued a citation for the consumption of alcohol by a minor and turned over to his friend who assumed care, custody and control of him. Occurred on 11/20/14 at 11:45 PM.
The University of Texas Police Department responded to 27 Alarm Reports, 3 “Police Help” Callbox Activations, 9 Suspicious Activity Reports, 4 Traffic Violations, 1 Motor Vehicle Collision, 2 Found Property Reports, 1 Welfare Concern Report, 2 Suspicious Odor Reports and 4 Public Assist Reports between 11/20/14 and 11/21/14.
Prepared by: Ofc. WR π/
To subscribe or unsubscribe, visit http://www.utexas.edu/police/campuswatch/subscribe.php/