Imposter immigration officers threaten to have you deported

Scammers try to scare you into believing you’ve violated the immigration law. Unless you pay a fee, they threaten to alert the police.

Fraudsters are impersonating the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) officers to trick their victims into giving them their money and personal information.

“They call or email saying you’ve violated immigration law. Or that your identity information is wrong or out of date. Or that you owe fees or need to pay an immigration bond. They’ll threaten to alert the police or to have you deported if you don’t give them the information they want. And they’ll tell you not to talk to anyone else about it — which means you can’t double-check their story,” the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) warned.

The organizations mentioned above never call out of the blue and demand money. If a caller asks for your personal information like your date of birth and asks you to pay a fee, it’s a scam. Hang up immediately.

A scammer might ask you for a fee in gift cards, cryptocurrency, or wire transfers. ICE and USCIS do not accept those types of payments.

“Don’t trust caller ID. Scammers can make their phone numbers look real even if they’re not. Sometimes they’ll have you look up their number to confirm it’s what’s listed on the agency’s website — even if it matches, it could be a trick,” FTC added.

If you are unsure whether a call or email is legitimate, contact ICE or USCIS. And here’s a proper way to do that: type the agency name into a search bar and click on their webpage to find contact information.