This afternoon an email was sent out to the OSU community warning students and staff that spoofing phone calls are being made from the Oklahoma State University Police Department’s (OSUPD) non-emergency phone line.
The callers are asking students for explicit photos, money and personal information.
“The OSUPD has taken three reports this week where the caller has requested money and asks female recipients to send nude photos.” OSU News said in a press release. “The actual number of incidents is believed to be much higher than what has actually been reported. Many students have discovered missed calls from the guilty phone number.”
Captain Colt Chandler from OSUPD said that there’s been a concern with people receiving these fraudulent calls for sometime now.
“Our communications division which is what we call our dispatch division, has been fueling phone calls from various citizens reporting that, ‘Hey, I’ve had a missed number from you for about a week now,’” Chandler said.
The three victims came forward Monday night, and from there, OSUPD wanted to notify people that these spoofs are active right now.
The OSUPD would like to remind all students that they would never request nude photos, money or identity verification. The phone number that is being used to make these fraudulent calls will appear as the OSUPD’s non-emergency line and the caller may even impersonate an officer such as Chief Leon Jones.
Even though Jones is directly affected because his name is out there, he doesn’t feel victimized. In fact, it was a light hearted moment for him, but OSUPD remains investigating the situation.
“I made (Chief Jones) aware this morning, he chuckled about it in a sense of, it's unfortunate, but it’s not making light of the situation,” Chandler said. “We understand it’s a serious situation that people are being victimized.”
Along with contacting OSUPD, Chandler made the first order of business not to answer any number you don’t know at all. If the phone is answered and someone suspects a scam, a report can be made to national security companies.
“If you do receive fraudulent phone calls for whatever reason, you can report to the FCC, you can report through the FBI, you could also report to your local police jurisdiction and then we can follow it up and report to whatever agency we can to help us out in some sense,” Chandler said.
In the event that you receive one of these calls, hang up and contact the OSUPD at 405-744-6523.
This story will be updated.