EMERGENCY ADVISORY TO ARKANSAS LICENSING AGENCIES, BOARDS, AND COMMMISSIONS OF AN IMPOSTER SCAM
March 17, 2021 – This emergency advisory is directed to the members, directors, and licensees of Arkansas licensing agencies, boards, and commissions.
The Office of the Attorney General recently became aware of a telephone scam targeting Arkansans who hold a professional license issued by the state. The caller poses as an agent for the licensing office and claims that the licensee is under an investigation and that their license has been suspended. The licensee’s caller ID may even display the licensing office’s phone number. To further attempt to appear legitimate, the caller may pretend to be a law enforcement officer or transfer the call to another person posing as a law enforcement officer or federal agent. The caller then offers to fix the problem or issue a temporary license and asks for personally identifiable information and a payment for a bond, e.g., $5,000. The caller likely will require that the payment be made by purchasing gift cards at a local retail store.
The caller may direct the licensee to travel to a UPS store or other such location to receive purported official documents, e.g., a letter of the licensee’s suspension, and to fax copies of the gift cards as payment. Of course, once the scammers have the gift card numbers, they immediately cash out the cards, and are never heard from again.
There have been several recent instances of this scam in Arkansas. We are also aware that this activity is occurring in other states.
If any consumer receives any of the scam calls described above, we request that they contact our office at: firstname.lastname@example.org. An investigator will respond to request any information we may need.
If you have any questions, contact the Attorney General’s Office at (501) 682-2007 or at Consumer@ArkansasAG.gov.