News Department

Hunterdon County officials warn of scammers pretending to be contact tracers

HUNTERDON COUNTY, NJ – The Hunterdon County Prosecutor’s Office is alerting the public to a recent phone scam directed at residents in Hunterdon County.

According to acting Hunterdon County Prosecutor Michael J. Williams, “We have received reports that residents have been getting phone calls from a person claiming to be from the Hunterdon County Department of Health. These scammers will identify themselves as contact tracers and then try to obtain personal information,”

“It appears these perpetrators are “spoofing” the actual phone numbers of the Department of Health. Spoofing is when a caller deliberately falsifies the information transmitted to your caller ID display to disguise their identity. I want to remind the public to never give out personal information such as bank account number, social security number, or date of birth over the phone. We are actively investigating this crime and will advise the public as we receive more information,” Williams said.

Anyone with information regarding this crime should contact the prosecutors office at 908-788-1129.

The following protocol used by the health department for contact tracing, Williams said, is the the nurses will identify themselves by name and as a nurse from the health department. If they are a confirmed case, the health department will have information regarding their current COVID diagnosis and ask them for names and phone numbers of those who were exposed to them during their infectious period. When a nurse calls the close contacts, they will advise them of their exposure and the recommendation to quarantine. The nurse will also provide them with information about COVID and what to do if they become symptomatic.

The department of health department employees never ask for an individual’s Social Security number, immigration status, credit card or banking information. County health employees do not share any immigration information with federal law enforcement agencies, and getting tested or treated for COVID-19 will not impact an undocumented person’s attempts at permanent U.S. residency, Williams said.

“Contact tracing is vital to saving lives and stopping the spread of this deadly virus. It is understandable that the recent information about these phone scams may be alarming, but it is still important to fully cooperate with health department officials,” Williams said.

Jay Edwards

Born and raised in Northwest NJ, Jay has a degree in Communications and has had a life-long interest in local radio and various styles of music. Jay has held numerous jobs over the years such as stunt car driver, bartender, voice-over artist, traffic reporter (award winning), NY Yankee maintenance crewmember and peanut farm worker. His hobbies include mountain climbing, snowmobiling, cooking, performing stand-up comedy and he is an avid squirrel watcher. Jay has been a guest on America’s Morning Headquarters,program on The Weather Channel, and was interviewed by Sam Champion.

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