A short term loan scam presently operating in Machias, Maine, involves phony phone calls made to victims by people claiming to be attorneys for loan companies, the Bangor Daily News reports.
The fraudsters, who police chief Grady Dwelley said can be traced back to area codes in the Los Angeles area, have allegedly obtained credit card information, dates of birth, telephone numbers and other personal information from Machias residents. However, Dwelley fears that the calls are being made via an internet service that allows for rapid changing of phone numbers to confuse police. "[The scam] is new here," Dwelley told the news source. "But because the location of the calling parties cannot be traced, our options are limited to alerting the public." Dwelley added that no actual place of business is mentioned during the calls, and the speaker talks quickly and has an accent, making his words hard to decipher. InsideArm reports of another short term scam that is currently taking place in North Dakota, where debt collectors impersonating criminal investigators call victims attempting to collect funds related to internet short term loans.