Safety

Santa Barbara County cellphone owners report suspicious calls from their own number

Santa Barbara County cellphone owners report suspicious calls from their own number

SANTA MARIA, Calif. - Some cell phone owners in Lompoc and Santa Maria say they have received suspicious calls from their own numbers.

Those who answer hear a recording claiming to be their cellphone company. They are then prompted to enter their social security number and other personal information. 

“When I picked up the phone it said it was from AT&T," said Joe A. Garcia, a Lompoc resident. "[It] caught me right away because my service is not through AT&T and they requested that I enter the last four digits of my social security number.”

“It says 'this is AT&T', which is my cell phone carrier, 'and we're calling because there's been a security breach on your account,'" said Donna Avila, another Lompoc resident whose daughter and granddaughter also received the same call. "[It asked to] enter the last four of your social security number which is your key to your account and it opens up anybody to make any charges or changes to your account."

It even happened to a sergeant at the Santa Maria Police Department.

"Actually just received a call last week," said Sgt. Eligio Lara. "And I looked at it to see where it came from and it actually came from my own phone." 

Police say they are currently also seeing a wave of IRS phone scams where people are told they owe money on taxes. In either case, they advise against providing personal information over the phone. 


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