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Minnesota scammers pretend to investigate fraud

MINNEAPOLIS -- The Minnesota Commerce Department says phone scammers have been calling residents of the state claiming they are investigating identity fraud cases that involve them, CBS Minnesota reports.

The callers say they need to withdraw money from the person's bank account to enable them to track the fraudster, according to the station.

"Scam artists will try every trick in the book to gain people's trust and steal their money," Commerce Commissioner Mike Rothman said. "Anyone can be a victim of a scam, so it's important for everyone to be vigilant."

Rothman says people should never give personal or financial information over the phone and that if a caller is a member of law enforcement they should be willing to give their name and agency. People can then contact that agency to confirm the caller's authenticity. Caller ID can be manipulated and should not be used alone to determine a caller's identity, he said.

Anyone who thinks they've been a victim of a scam can email the commerce commission or call 651-539-1600, or 800-657-3602.

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