An e-mail that you receive may not be from whom they appear to be from – Recently an alert business person advised us of an attempted fraud from his business.  He received an email that had the “University of Maryland” spelled out in the email address.  Most would assume that the e-mail was from the University.  Closer review of the case indicated that the real university uses just the initials “UMD” in their email address.  So what appeared at first to be from the university was not.  Please note there is no verification process when someone establishes an email address.  Any person may make up an address if it is not already in use. 

A “caller ID” number that shows on your phone may not actually be from the number that appears to be calling – Persons that are attempting to commit a fraud by calling you may use a system that allows them to “clone” another phone number; or cause any phone number to appear on your screen even though they are not calling from that number.  As an example, some of our recent cases involve incidents where a caller explains that they are from the IRS and the recipient of the call owes back taxes and then relays where to send the funding.  The caller ID number may appear on the screen.  When the recipient of the call checks that number, in fact, the number is the actual IRS phone number; but the call is not actually originating from the IRS. 

The only way to determine reliability of an email address or a caller is to independently check the information through other means such as a check of the information on-line or by calling your police agency.  Your police department is Southwestern Regional Police and our information is as follows:

            Emergency                                       911

            Non – Emergency Dispatch         717.854.5571

            Police Offices                                  717.225.1333 ext. 100