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2011-06-30 digital edition

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2011-06-30 / Community News

Texas DPS Warns Of Telephone Scams Using Its Name

Scammers have been calling Texans in various parts of the state, demanding that residents immediately pay for overdue redlight tickets. The most recent incident was reported in Cleveland, Texas, where police say that residents have received calls from someone claiming to represent DPS and demanding payment on a red-light safety camera ticket. The scammers say that an arrest warrant will be issued if the person receiving the call does not provide a credit card number, as well as Social Security numbers and other personal information. The Texas Department of Public Safety does not collect traffic fines or oversee red-light cameras.

DPS also reminds Texans that the department does not call requesting charitable donations. DPS advises citizens not to give money to these groups as the funds may not go to the causes that are claimed. Some groups include in their names the terms, “ Texas Rangers,” State Troopers,” “ Texas Highway Patrol,” or “Department of Public Safety.”

While some current or former employees may be members of some of these associations on their own time, these organizations are not affiliated with the DPS nor do they represent the department. Many of these organizations provide only a small percent of their donations for good causes, with the majority of the donations going to administrative and operational purposes.

If you are contacted by a group you believe is misrepresenting itself as part of the Texas DPS, contact the Consumer Protection Division of the Texas Attorney General’s Office at 1-800-621- 0508.

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