Clerk of Court Linda Doggett is warning residents of the most recent spike in fraudulent e-mails by entities impersonating clerks' offices across the state.
This newest round of scams comes in the form of an e-mail referencing a missed court appearance. Unlike past scams, these e-mails attempt to retrieve personal data, forcefully, by computer virus attached as a .zip file. These malicious attachments contain a "Trojan Horse" virus that becomes active as soon as the file is unzipped.
Recent examples of these scams have been signed by fictitious county clerks.
The Clerk of Court would like to remind residents that all court-related communications are sent through normal mail.
Jury summons and failure to appear notices are never sent via phone or e-mail.
Important tips to remember:
The Clerk's office does not call or e-mail residents to request payment for missing jury duty. The office will also never request payment via any sort of prepaid debit card.
The Clerk's office does not call or e-mail residents to verify information related to jury duty or to notify them that they missed jury duty. Communications are only sent by mail.
If a resident misses jury duty, the individual receives a failure to appear notice in the mail from the judge representing their Circuit Court.
Arrest warrants are not usually issued for failure to report for jury duty. Please contact the Clerk's office, if you receive one.
Do not open an e-mail attachment from any unfamiliar source, and never provide personal information to an unfamiliar source, either by phone or e-mail.
Linda Doggett suggests calling the Sheriff's Office Fraud/Scam line at 239-258-3292 with any suspicious or unsolicited communications.
To learn more about the Crime Prevention topics offered by the Lee County Sheriff's Office please visit website www.sheriffleefl.org .
Source: Lee County Clerk of the Courts