Printed on: August 27, 2020
By LOIS KINDLE
The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Workplace has reopened its Dist. Four substation in Solar Metropolis Heart.
Positioned within the Atrium Constructing courtyard at 948 Cherry Hills Drive, the substation gives space residents with a bodily place to go and file claims of fraud or scams with Neighborhood Service Aide Michelle Mortimer. It’s additionally an workplace house for Neighborhood Service Deputy Jeff Merry, when he’s not out on service calls or attending conferences.
“Michelle was quickly housed on the Dist. 4 (command) workplace in Ruskin, whereas this one was closed,” defined Merry. “Our telephones have been transferred there, so she might deal with the identical kinds of calls she did right here.”
Whereas the substation was closed from early March although Aug. 24, Merry participated in Zoom conferences every time potential. The data he would have usually imparted to the general public by means of in-person conferences and boards went out as public service bulletins, Fb postings, mailings, newspaper adverts and drive-through occasions, like Operation Medication Cupboard in July and the one on Aug. 13 at Neighborhood Corridor, the place 500 informational packets with hurricane readiness sources have been handed out, have been additionally used.
The following Operation Medication Chest has been set for Dec. 4, once more at Neighborhood Corridor.
Visits to the substation are by appointment solely. Like many locations today, the workplace is supplied with plexiglass shields, and for the safety of HCSO workers and the general public, guests should put on masks, have their temperatures checked and reply a sequence of screening questions earlier than admission.
In the meantime, Mortimer and Merry have been busy dealing with studies of many instances of fraud in Solar Metropolis Heart. “We’ve seen a rise in laptop scams, romance scams, (pretend) calls from the Sheriff’s Workplace concerning warrants, and social media scams,” Mortimer stated. “Simply this week, an SCC sufferer misplaced about $40,000 by giving distant entry to their laptop, so it may very well be unlocked by a suspect who then was in a position to switch funds out of the particular person’s checking account.”
The sufferer had acquired a pretend pop-up on the pc that stated to name a specified quantity for assist.
As soon as somebody has backdoor entry to your laptop, spy ware or malware will be put in on it to allow entry for the completion of legal actions, which go unnoticed till they’re ultimately found. Sadly, it’s often not till after the criminal has absconded with a lot or your entire checking account.
“By no means click on on hyperlinks or pop-ups in your laptop or in emails, until you understand precisely whom you’re coping with,” Merry stated. “Don’t name numbers included in both of them or on unverified web sites. And if you happen to don’t know a caller, don’t interact in dialog, simply hold up.”
Any time you might want to report a suspicious correspondence or contact, or if you happen to suspect somebody has taken benefit of you, name the HCSO substation in Solar Metropolis Heart to report it at 813-242-5515. The workplace is open from 7:30 a.m. to Four p.m. Monday by means of Friday.