Telephone scam artists conned a University of Wisconsin graduate student out of $15,000 Thursday afternoon.
According to a Madison Police Department incident report, the callers convinced the 24-year-old student that her social security number had been compromised and was now associated with criminal activity.
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The criminals made it appear as if MPD was calling the victim by “spoofing” the department’s number.
They kept the victim on the phone for five hours while she provided them with gift card numbers. The report also said callers told her to comply or a federal investigation could be opened, which would freeze her assets and result in her deportation.
The victim realized she had been duped when the callers demanded she buy more gift cards. She then demanded to speak with an officer in person.