LAREDO, TX (KGNS) - The Laredo Police Department is warning the community about a current trend of scams that are not only targeting residents but local businesses as well.
It's not just one but two types of scams are making the rounds in Laredo and police say it's a growing trend.
The Laredo Police Department is alerting local businesses and the community about the current wave of two different types of fraudulent calls.
In the first type of cases, criminals are going down the phone book one by one trying to confuse and extort money from local businesses by using intimidation tactics.
In the second case, calls are being made to local residents disguised as phone numbers from the Laredo Police Department to try and collect money.
This type of fraud is also known as spoofing as the person claims to be a Laredo Police Department investigator.
Investigator Joe Baeza with the police department says the fraud caller often tries to convince the victims to pay over the phone, and even go as far as requesting gift cards as a form of purchase.
Investigator Baeza says the businesses that have been contacted have hung up on the fraudulent callers and reported the calls to police.
Police are also advising to never make any payments over the phone to numbers you don't recognize.
If you receive a fraudulent call please report it to police at 795-2800.
Law enforcement officials say no one should be intimidated by merely a voice giving instructions to someone over the phone.
If the caller claims to be a law enforcement official, verify the source by calling the Laredo Police Department.