PRESS RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Janice Fitzsimons/Lori Sitler, Public Information Officers
Phone: (302) 577-8314
Pager: (302) 247-1132
Date: September 22, 2004
ATTORNEY GENERAL BRADY AND SENATOR HARRIS MCDOWELL WARN CONSUMERS
ABOUT GROUP CLAIMING TO AWARD FEDERAL GRANT MONEY
Delaware Attorney General Jane Brady and Delaware State Senator Harris McDowell today warned consumers to beware of callers fraudulently claiming to be representatives of the United States Government or groups assisting the federal government with grant distribution. At least three victims to date in Delaware, two students from the University of Delaware and one student from Wesley College, have received such calls. Senator McDowell intercepted a call intended for a family member. Recognizing it was likely a scam, he reported it immediately to the Attorney General’s office. In each instance, the caller asked for a social security number and a checking account number to debit a "one time processing fee" after which they promised to direct deposit "federal grant money" at a later date.
Attorney General Brady warns, “Never give your bank account number or social security number to anyone you do not know or over the telephone. Thanks to Senator McDowell’s presence of mind to take as much information as possible from this perpetrator and to immediately report the fraudulent call, we have been able to identify this new effort to defraud Delaware citizens.” Senator McDowell warned all consumers to be “cautious when you receive phone calls indicating you have won a grant or a prize. Immediately contact the Attorney General who does a fine job investigating these claims and alerting the public.”
The Attorney General cautions parents of college and university students to alert their children as well, as it appears the scam is targeted at them.
For more information about these activities, or to report a similar crime, contact The Attorney General’s Office Consumer Protection Division at 1-800-220-5424.