It’s not your day in court

“Hereby you are notified that you have been scheduled to appear for your hearing that will take place in the court of Tallahassee in April 02, 2014 at 09:00 am.” Signed, the Clerk to the Court.

Sound official? Like the fake funeral notices we wrote about recently, emails like this have been going around trying to convince concerned — or curious — people to click on the supposed “court notice.”

Don’t do it.

Scammers send convincing-looking fake emails like this with links or attachments they want you to click. When you do, you could download malware onto your computer.

fake email

Malware is short for “malicious software." It includes viruses and spyware that get installed on your computer, phone, or mobile device without your consent. These programs can cause your device to crash and can be used to monitor and control your online activity. Criminals use malware to steal personal information, send spam, and commit fraud.

If you get an unexpected email like this, delete it. Don’t click on any attachments or links. If you’re not sure whether it’s real, you can always contact the court, company, or agency it claims to be from directly.

But what if you already clicked on the attachment?

  • Stop shopping, banking, and doing other online activities that involve user names, passwords, or other sensitive information.
  • Update your security software, and then run it to scan your computer for viruses and spyware. Delete anything it identifies as a problem. You may have to restart your computer for the changes to take effect.
  • If your computer is covered by a warranty that offers free tech support, contact the manufacturer.
  • If you can’t solve the problem on your own, consider hiring a company — some are affiliated with retail stores — that offers tech support on the phone, online, at their store, and in your home.

For more, read Malware and follow these computer security practices.

Last but not least — if you’re been targeted by a phishing email like this, forward it to spam@uce.gov. If you might have already been tricked by a phishing email, file a complaint with the FTC at ftc.gov/complaint, then visit the FTC’s Identity Theft website. Victims of phishing could become victims of identity theft, and there are steps you can take to minimize your risk.

Comments

Frankly a court date in Tallahassee with this state's public officials would have to be reviewed by a higher court if it could be verified that the Supreme Court does indeed believe all citizens of this country are equal and deserve equal protection under the laws like the 14th amendment promised. And yes, the DCF official that warned me of Satan's work told me not to read Bush vs. Gore 2000 and admitted they undid my and my families work already. There, go with Sandy, because she's honest by gosh!

Fortunately for me I got my summons by post. Letters from bailiffs, international lottery wins and hordes of junk mails.

I got one of these e-mails. What I did was save the zip file to my hard drive and look inside it. I saw that the file inside was an .exe file, not a pdf or jpg so I deleted everything.

I received a scam call earlier today from a cell phone #408-209-3564. The person on the phone (a phoney Lt. Mike Stevens) said I missed a court date for jury duty and there was a warrant out for my arrest. He started to state there was a Judge White that I need to contact to get the warrant stopped and if I could use the Green Dot Money Card to send money. I asked him if I could put him on hold and tried to contact the local PD (to no avail). They said to contact this site. So I am letting your department know.

Hi sanjosecitizen,

Thanks for sharing your story. To file a formal complaint with the FTC, just go to ftc.gov/complaint.

I just received the same type of call. He said there was a warrant for my arrest for failure to appear for grand jury duty. Demanded that I give him $7500 that I would get back from the judge at my court hearing scheduled for July 16th. He was very aggressive and threatening. When I told him I had recorded everything he had said, he threatened to send the police to my residence to arrest me right now. He hung up. I notified police and they confirmed there is no warrant outstanding.

Gor a phone call that I was going to be served tomorrow between 3-5 pm in my residence AND place of employement. However, I could STOP this action by calling 443-282-1542. Since I have Google Voice, I checked the number where the call was originated (it was a no caller ID) and the phone number was most likely a VOIP 65029007431087744062. Unbelievable! I mean I get these phone calls everyday. I looked for the 443 number and it has no business attached. Howwver, upon further review, I could track the use of the number to stores in Michoacan, Mexico. I am soooo tired of this.

i received a call yesterday from this same number stating that i had a past bsnking transaction that can effect my curent banking situation. I called them they said i was going to be servred papers if i did not pay they money that i owed to a old pay day loan company that i am sure i payed yeats ago. What should i do?

This may be a situation of a "phantom debt". We've written blogs about this before. You can also find tips on how to handle the fake debt collector here.

got a phone call at my job from 718-412-0086 stating they are the dept of investigation and want me to give my address to receive papers or call 877-742-6623.

Pages

Leave a Comment

Comment Policy

Read Our Privacy Act Statement

It is your choice whether to submit a comment. If you do, you must create a user name, or we will not post your comment. The Federal Trade Commission Act authorizes this information collection for purposes of managing online comments. Comments and user names are part of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) public records system, and user names also are part of the FTC’s computer user records system. We may routinely use these records as described in the FTC’s Privacy Act system notices. For more information on how the FTC handles information that we collect, please read our privacy policy.