EAST MADISON — Somerset County Sheriff Barry DeLong is not making personal calls to your home asking for donations, nor are any of his deputies.

Don’t fall for it — it’s a scam, Detective Mathew Cunningham said Wednesday.

Cunningham said the department has received multiple reports from people across the state in recent days telling them callers are identifying themselves as DeLong or as representatives of the sheriff’s office.

The callers then go on to ask personal questions, requesting confidential identity information under the auspices of an official police investigation, Cunningham said. In same cases, callers are soliciting or demanding cash.

“The Somerset County Sheriff’s Department will never call and demand money or donations, under any circumstances, from private citizens,” Cunningham said.

He said if county investigators do call people in the area, they will identify themselves by name and rank.

Cunningham offered the following tips to prevent telephone fraud and identity theft.

  • Always make sure you know who is calling before releasing sensitive information over the telephone.
  • Do not agree to demands. Tell the caller you need more time to verify the legitimacy of the call.
  • Call the local police department or the sheriff’s office for help if you think you have been the target of a scam.
  • Never send money or give credit card or online bank account information to anyone you do not know.

 

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