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Mail theft, scams on rise, Sheriff’s Office says

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Wednesday, June 18, 2014, at 2:41 p.m.

Criminals have recently targeted mailboxes, Sedgwick County Sheriff’s Office said in a news conference Wednesday.

Two residential mailboxes were stolen June 13 in the 19700 block of West Central. Although it is not known if the intent was to the take the mail or just to vandalize, mail theft has been on the rise, Lt. Dave Mattingly said.

Mail that contains personal information – such as credit card receipts or bank statements – can be used to open charge accounts, Mattingly said.

Criminals have also been using a mobile application to change the caller ID on a telephone call to a more trusted number, such as the Sheriff’s Office phone number. Criminals will call victims, asking for credit card information or to wire money for fundraisers, warrants, missed jury duty or getting someone released from jail in a foreign country.

“People want to believe people,” Mattingly said. “These are criminals, con artists. They are very good at their job … They’re very persuasive.”

The Sheriff’s Office reminds people to never give out personal information over the phone unless the person initiates the contact.

Reach Shelby Reynolds at 268-6419 or sreynolds@wichitaeagle.com. Follow her on Twitter: @_shelbyreynolds.

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