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Telephone Scam Targeting Refugees

A nationwide telephone scam is targeting refugees to obtain money and personal information.

The Office of Refugee Resettlement (ORR) website is posting recent updates on this situation. 

Reports of refugee families victimized by a recent telephone scam targeting Bhutanese refugees have come in from Texas, Washington State, Colorado, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Nebraska (so far).  An Iraqi refugee in Washington State was also recently targeted. Refugees have been asked to verify personal information and to wire money.  A male caller has identified himself as a World Relief employee, a representative of the “Federal Grants Department" or employee of the IRS.

Victims should file a report on the website.  If enough incidents occur as tracked through that site, then the FBI will pursue the case. The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) is a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C).

Please help ORR spread the word throughout the refugee community and providers network, so that no more families fall victim to this scam.  Should you have any questions about questionable solicitations to refugees, please contact your local resettlement agency, law enforcement authorities or ORR for assistance.