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Theft of camper trailer being investigated information sought.

The Stone County Sheriff's Office is looking for a 2021 white Casita Liberty 16' travel trailer that was taken off a camping site on Gunner Pool Road in Fifty Six area on 8/24/2022. If anyone knows about this theft, contact Chief Deputy Dammon McGilton at 870-866-8038.

Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over The Results of Drunk Driving Could Be Crushing

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:  8-21-2022

CONTACT: Sergeant Joe Beaudin Stone County Sheriff's office

 

Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over The Results of Drunk Driving Could Be Crushing

Mountain View, Arkansas - During the Labor Day holiday, including the end of summertime and the busy Labor Day weekend, the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is working alongside the law enforcement community in Stone County to decrease impaired driving. From August 19 through September 5, Stone County Sheriff's office and the Mountain View Police Department will be participating in the Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over enforcement period. In support of the law enforcement community's dedication to protecting the lives of residents in their communities, you'll see officers working together during this time to take drunk drivers off the roads. No matter how you plan to celebrate the end of the season this year, make sure you plan it safely.

 

According to the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), 11,654 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2020 that involved an alcohol-impaired driver. On average, more than 10,000 people were killed each year from 2016 to 2020, and one person was killed in a drunk-driving crash every 45 minutes in 2020. This is why County Law Enforcement Agencies are working together with NHTSA to remind drivers that drunk driving is not only illegal, it is a matter of life and death. As you head out to festivities during the end of summer and Labor Day weekend, remember: Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.

 

"We want our community members to understand that it's our first priority to keep people safe, so we're asking everyone to plan ahead if they know they'll be out drinking," said Sheriff Lance Bonds  "We need commitment from our community members that they'll keep the streets free of drunk drivers so that everyone can have a safe summertime and Labor Day holiday. This is an awareness effort to get the message out that drunk driving is illegal and it takes lives. Let's make this a partnership between law enforcement and drivers: Help us protect the community and put an end to this senseless behavior," he said. 

 

During the 2020 Labor Day holiday period (6 p.m. September 4 - 5:59 a.m. September 8), there were 530 crash fatalities nationwide. Forty-six percent of those fatalities involved drivers who had been drinking (.01+ BAC). More than one-third (38%) of the fatalities involved drivers who were drunk (.08+ BAC), and one-fourth (25%) involved drivers who were driving with a BAC almost twice the legal limit (.15+ BAC). Age is a particularly risky factor: Among drivers between the ages of 21 and 34 who were killed in crashes over the Labor Day holiday period in 2020, 44% of those drivers were drunk, with BACs of .08 or higher.

 

Stone County Sheriff's office and Mountain View Police Dept and NHTSA are reminding citizens of the many resources available to get them home safely. "Drunk driving is not acceptable behavior, especially when there are so many safe alternatives to get you home safely," said Chief George Bethell

 

Stone County Law Enforcement recommends these safe alternatives to drinking and driving:

Remember that it is never okay to drink and drive. Even if you've had only one alcoholic beverage, designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation or a ride service to get home safely. If you see a drunk driver on the road, contact Stone County Sheriff's office 8702693825 Do you have a friend who is about to drink and drive? Take the keys away and make arrangements to get your friend home safely.

For more information on impaired driving, visit www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/drunk-driving.

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END OF SUMMER PATROLS AIMED AT IMPAIRED DRIVERS

END OF SUMMER PATROLS AIMED AT IMPAIRED DRIVERS

     

Additional Information Contact:

Highway Safety Office - Bridget White (501) 618-8356   bridget.white@asp.arkansas.gov

   

AUGUST 15, 2022

 

  Arkansas motorists will begin to see more Arkansas State Troopers, sheriff's deputies, and local police on patrol later this week.  The increased presence of law enforcement officers on state highways and local roads is part of a joint mission with the U.S. Department of Transportation's National Highway Safety Administration (NHTSA) to stop impaired driving.

 

  Beginning Friday (August 19th) law enforcement agencies across the country will step-up patrols through the remainder of the summer and during the upcoming Labor Day holiday that ends on September 6th.  Drivers should always remember, Drive Sober or Get Pulled Over.

 

  Statistical reports from NHTSA indicate that 11,654 people were killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2020 that involved an alcohol-impaired driver.  On average, more than 10,000 people were killed each year from 2016 to 2020, and one person was killed in a drunk driving crash every 45 minutes in 2020.

 

  "We want Arkansans to understand it's our first priority to keep people safe," said Colonel Bill Bryant, Director of the Arkansas State Police and the Governor's Highway Safety Representative.  "No one gets a free pass; drunk drivers go to jail."

 

  Planning before the festivities or travel begins can eliminate the risk of injury, death, or someone being placed in jail.  The Arkansas Highway Safety Office recommends these safe alternatives to drinking and driving:

 

Designate a sober driver or plan to use public transportation.  Consider a ride service to get home safely. If you see a drunk driver on the road, call 9-1-1. If you know someone about to drive or operate a motorcycle or any other vehicle while impaired, take their keys and help them make other arrangements to get to their destination safely. Always buckle up.  A seat belt is your best defense against a drunk driver.

  "We need commitment from all motorists they will keep our roadways free of drunk drivers so that everyone can travel safely.  Increased patrols are part of an awareness effort to get the message out that drunk driving is illegal, and it can be deadly," said Colonel Bryant.  "It's a partnership between law enforcement and drivers.  Help us protect all roadway users and put an end to this senseless behavior".

  For more information on impaired driving, visit https://www.nhtsa.gov/risky-driving/drunk-driving or call the Arkansas Highway Safety Office at (501) 618-8136.  Learn about Arkansas' ongoing Toward Zero Deaths campaign to eliminate preventable traffic fatalities by visiting www.TZDArkansas.org.

 

Attorney General Alert: Consumers and Business Owners Beware, Don't Fall Prey to Utility Scams

Attorney General Alert: Consumers and Business Owners Beware, Don't Fall Prey to Utility Scams

LITTLE ROCK - Increasing temperatures lead to increasing utility bills for Arkansas business owners, something scam artists are using to their advantage when targeting individuals and local businesses. While utility companies accept multiple payment methods for the convenience of businesses and consumers, gift cards and crypto-currency, like Bitcoin, are not on the list. Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge is warning Arkansans that scammers are finding ways to prey on Arkansans and directly impacting their budget and hard-earned money.

"Arkansans are suffering from a struggling economy, high prices and even higher temperatures, they do not need the worry about additional costs that come from these scams," said Attorney General Leslie Rutledge. "I urge Arkansans to be vigilant against potential scams so they don't lose their cool or their money." 

How to spot a utility payment scam:

The scammer will call and tell you that you have an unpaid balance even if you are current on all utility payments. The scammer will pressure you to pay through a gift card, bitcoin, prepaid debit card, or wire transfer and not through the official methods offered by the utility.

How to ensure your payment gets to the utility company safely and securely:

Track your utility payment due date on a calendar when you receive the bill. Drop off the payment at the utility office or an authorized payment location. Pay online on the utility company's website with a credit card or call the company directly. Consider participating in an automated draft system if it is offered. Mail the payment to the company directly.

If you fall victim to one of these phone calls, file a complaint with the Attorney General's office. The Attorney General's office also makes presentations on scams to organizations and groups. To call and schedule a scam prevention presentation, call 501-682-2007 or email speaker@arkansasag.gov.

AG ALERT: Scam Artists Posing as AR Health Inspectors in Restaurants

LITTLE ROCK - Once again, scam artists have targeted restaurants around Arkansas posing as Arkansas Department of Health (ADH) officials claiming to conduct restaurant inspections. Attorney General Leslie Rutledge is urging Arkansans not to fall for this scam, especially when the individual is attempting to demand immediate payment for declared violations.

"Scam artists are exploiting the stress and burden faced by Arkansas businesses, as the owners focus on tightening their budgets to manage the skyrocketing inflation, supply issues and staffing shortages," said Attorney General Rutledge. "Call my office immediately if you are contacted by a con artist demanding money from a false business inspection."

Attorney General Rutledge provides the following advice for anyone contacted about an inspection at their place of business:

Legitimate ADH Environmental Health Service inspectors carry identification with the agency logo and will always be willing to provide it when asked. ADH inspectors will never ask for money. ADH also conducts inspections for cosmetology services, plumbing, natural gas and many other areas. You can also contact your Local Health Unit or ADH Environmental Health Protection program at (501) 661-2171 to confirm the identity of an inspector.

If you believe you have been contacted by a scammer or fallen victim to a scam posing as an ADH official, you can report these calls to the Attorney General's office online at www.ArkansasAG.gov, by emailing OAG@ArkansasAG.gov or by calling (800) 482-8982. Please note the time of the call and the number it came from when you report it.

AG Alert: July Recognized as Military Consumer Protection Month

AG Alert: July Recognized as Military Consumer Protection Month

LITTLE ROCK - This July, Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge and the Federal Trade Commission are highlighting consumer protection issues that impact many American consumers, specifically those members of the United States Armed Forces. While no one is immune from falling prey to scams, there are certain scams that are directed to those who serve the nation in uniform.

"Scam artists prey on the fact that United States service members are the most sacrificial people and exploit their generosity to gain a profit," said Attorney General Rutledge. "It is important that current and former members of our armed forces, as well as their families, are able to identify these types of scams so that they do not fall victim to them."

Attorney General Rutledge released the following tips and common scams military service members and veterans should be cautious of moving forward:

Be aware of any scam artists charging money for free records. Scammers will attempt to convince veterans to pay for documents that are already free. If you want copies of VA or military records, you can contact the Department of Veterans Affairs, the National Achieves, or the appropriate service branch. Be skeptical of any exclusive deal only for veterans. In some cases, there are legitimate deals for veterans, but in many cases, the items are not discounted at all, but are non-existent products and services. It is best to check the products before you buy and never send money to anyone you do not know. Be guarded when anyone demands an up-front payment. It is a common scam for con artists to demand payment or large sums of money up front and some will even go as far as claiming to be military personnel overseas. No legitimate business will ever demand for complete payment up front and this is a red flag. Be suspicious of any individual or entity requiring monetary compensation to file disability claims for Veterans. The claim process is free and can be submitted by coordinating with a certified County Veteran Service Officer (CVSO) or any Veteran Administration claims representative.  The Arkansas Department of Veterans Affairs can help you find your certified CVSO here. Be leery of email messages claiming to be from a legitimate organization that does not have its own domain name. An official email from a legitimate company or organization should not come from an email address ending in "@gmail.com" or "@yahoo.com" and this should be a red flag. Be careful with any correspondence containing poor spelling and grammar. Legitimate companies and organizations typically proofread documents and emails thoroughly before sending them. Errors can be a red flag for fraud. Be cautious with suspicious links and high-pressure requests.  Scammers will say and do anything to steal personal information. By sending a link through email or text message which is clicked on by the consumer, scammers can steal any personal information that is saved on the device. Never click on any link sent from an unknown source. Be suspicious of unsolicited investment advice. Some scammers have disguised themselves as veterans' advocates and claim victims are entitled to additional veterans' benefits. If approached by someone in this manner, confirm the alleged state regulatory office, hang up, and independently call the office directly.

In 2019, Attorney General Rutledge successfully sued Andrew Gamber; Voyager Financial Group, LLC; BAIC, Inc.; and SoBell Corp. for the brokering of contracts that offer high-interest credit to veterans in exchange for investors illegally acquiring rights to receive future pension payments. The following year, Rutledge sued Candy Kern-Fuller and Howard Sutter, lawyers at UpState Law Group in South Carolina for substantially assisting brokers with the illegal sale of veterans' future pension payments. Kern-Fuller and Sutter are accused of developing the contract approval, payment collection and enforcement processes. The broker companies falsely told veterans that they were selling their future payments for a reduced lump-sum. In reality, the veterans' pension assignment contracts were high interest loans that were void from the start. These deceptive and unfair acts and practices violate state and federal laws protecting veterans.

Arkansas military service members, veterans and families can file consumer complaints with the Attorney General's office at ArkansasAG.gov.

About Attorney General Leslie Rutledge

Leslie Carol Rutledge is the 56th Attorney General of Arkansas. Elected on November 4, 2014, and sworn in on January 13, 2015, she is the first woman and first Republican in Arkansas history to be elected as Attorney General. She was resoundingly re-elected on November 6, 2018. Since taking office, she has significantly increased the number of arrests and convictions against online predators who exploit children and con artists who steal taxpayer money through Social Security Disability and Medicaid fraud. Further, she has held Rutledge Roundtable meetings and Mobile Office hours in every county of the State each year, and launched a Military and Veterans Initiative. She has led efforts to roll back government regulations that hurt job creators, fight the opioid epidemic, teach internet safety, combat domestic violence and make the office the top law firm for Arkansans. Rutledge serves on committees for Consumer Protection, Criminal Law and Veterans Affairs for the National Association of Attorneys General. She also served as the former Chairwoman of the Republican Attorneys General Association.

A native of Batesville, she is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law. Rutledge clerked for the Arkansas Court of Appeals, was Deputy Counsel for former Governor Mike Huckabee, served as a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in Lonoke County and was an Attorney at the Department of Human Services before serving as Counsel at the Republican National Committee. Rutledge and her husband, Boyce, have one daughter. The family has a home in Pulaski County and a farm in Crittenden County.

Arrests made for Possession of Controlled Substance- Methamphetamine

Stone County Sheriff's Department

Press Release

Drug Bust:  Approximately $82,000 street value of Crystal Meth seized in Stone County. 

According to Sheriff Lance Bonds, his department conducted a large-scale methamphetamine bust that landed two individuals in jail.  Jennifer L. Mannon, age 38, of Mountain View and Wesley R. Greenway, age 46 of Mountain View were arrested and charged with Trafficking Crystal Methamphetamine and other drug related charges. 

On June 23, 2022, Deputies Justin Meeks and Tony Trammell went to a residence on Pitard Loop in Stone County in an attempt to locate Jennifer Mannon, who is a parole absconder.  While at the residence deputies located Mannon and took her into custody.  Mannon and Greenway are on parole and probation with a search waiver on file.  A home visit was conducted and methamphetamine was located.  Lieutenant Trammell observed two bags of methamphetamine weighing approximately one-half pound lying on the floor behind a couch.  Investigator Meeks observed a smaller baggie of meth in a bedroom.  Both Mannon and Greenway was taken into custody for possession of meth. 

Chief Deputy Dammon McGilton was called to the scene.  A search warrant was obtained and just over a pound of meth was located in a safe.  The investigation continued on June 27th when Chief Deputy McGilton, Lieutenant Trammell, and Special Agent Sanders with the 16th Drug Task Force went back to the property and received consent to search from a person at the location.  A building was searched and an indoor marijuana grow was located as well as marijuana growing on the property.  A small amount of processed marijuana was located in the building along with a half-ounce of meth, meth paraphernalia, and psilocybin mushrooms which is a schedule I narcotic.  The total amount of Crystal Methamphetamine seized was 869 grams valued at approximately $82,000.00 street value.  There were approximately 28 grams of marijuana, and approximately 5 grams of psilocybin mushrooms seized. 

Greenway and Mannon are being charged with Trafficking over 200 grams of meth, a Class Y Felony; Maintaining a Drug Premises, a Class C Felony; Possession of a Schedule I Narcotic, (Psilocybin Mushrooms), with Purpose to Deliver, a Class B Felony; Possession of Marijuana with the Purpose to Deliver, a Class D Felony; Growing and Manufacturing of Marijuana, a Class D Felony; and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia with the Purpose to Weigh or use Crystal Meth, a Class D Felony.  Mannon was also charged as a habitual offender.  Bond was set on both individuals at $200,000.00. 

Sheriff Bonds said, "The drug investigation is ongoing and his department will continue to aggressively fight the war on drugs."

Also:

On the same day in an unrelated incident, Sheriff Bonds stated that Chad A. Dayberry, age 30, of Pleasant Grove, was arrested by Investigator Justin Meeks for probation violations and possession of crystal meth over 2 but less than 10 grams, a Class C Felony.  Dayberry was in possession of approximately 9 grams of crystal methamphetamine.  Dayberry's bond is set at $15,000.00.       

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Attorney General Alert: Vacation Scams

LITTLE ROCK - The school year is winding down, and many Arkansans are making summer vacation plans. Whether it is a trip to the beach, somewhere abroad, or one of Arkansas's many lakes or state parks, Arkansans should keep a watchful eye to avoid falling victim to a vacation scam. Scam artists are using the internet, including online advertising and social media, to pitch free or deeply discounted travel deals.

Many scammers will attempt to convince you that your friends and family members are taking advantage of this offer and you should too. Meanwhile, other scammers include being offered vacation rentals that look too good to be true. Travelers make the reservation and show up at the home or condo, only to find it was never up for rent and a scam artist stole photos and listing information to trick you out of hard earned cash. While it is possible to find a good travel deal or even win a vacation, you must stay mindful of the fact that there are bad actors seeking to ruin your fun by taking your money.   

"Scam artists will stop at nothing to take advantage of hard working Arkansans," said Attorney General Rutledge. "Fraudsters are constantly coming up with new ways to steal your money, but one thing never changes; if it sounds too good to be true, it likely is."

Attorney General Rutledge released the following list of common scams vacationers could encounter:

Third-party Booking Scam: If you book your airfare, hotel, rental car, or other travel through a third party website, use caution. After booking, scammers call consumers directly to verify personal financial information-something a legitimate company would never do. Ticket Sale Scam: Summertime is full of festivals and concerts that often sell out. Scammers take advantage of this and list tickets for sale at a discounted price. Consumers don't find out until trying to attend the event that the tickets are fake. Gasoline Scam: Scammers approach with a convincing story that they ran out of gas and money. They claim to only need $40 to fill up the tank and may even offer to mail a check to repay you. The likelihood that the repayment will be received is slim. Either refuse to give the scammers money or pay for their fuel at the nearest service station to ensure the money is spent as intended. Rideshare Service Scam: Uber or Lyft drivers approach, and mention that a passenger just canceled a trip, leaving them available for a trip, but they must be paid in cash. Often, these drivers do not even work for a legitimate rideshare company. Similarly, any drivers who claim an "outage" is preventing them from accepting payment via the Uber or Lyft system is a red flag. Cashless travel is one of the main perks of using a rideshare company. Fake Front Desk Phone Call Scam: Scam artists call hotel rooms directly, often in the middle of the night.. They say there has been a computer glitch and they need to verify your credit card information. Hang up immediately and contact the front desk to verify the call.

Some helpful travel tips include:

Put a travel alert on your debit or credit card to prevent issues or scams while out of town. Use a credit card instead of a debit card because there are more protections available and it may be easier to dispute versus losing access to the cash in your bank account. Use social media with care-don't post while you're out of town. You might be inviting a criminal into your empty house. Withdraw cash from an ATM at a financial institution versus a standalone ATM to prevent your card information from being stolen.

For more information on safe summer travel and other consumer-related issues or to file a consumer complaint, visit ArkansasAG.gov or contact the Attorney General's office at (800) 482-8982 or consumer@arkansasag.gov.

About Attorney General Leslie Rutledge

Leslie Carol Rutledge is the 56th Attorney General of Arkansas. Elected on November 4, 2014, and sworn in on January 13, 2015, she is the first woman and first Republican in Arkansas history to be elected as Attorney General. She was resoundingly re-elected on November 6, 2018. Since taking office, she has significantly increased the number of arrests and convictions against online predators who exploit children and con artists who steal taxpayer money through Social Security Disability and Medicaid fraud. Further, she has held Rutledge Roundtable meetings and Mobile Office hours in every county of the State each year, and launched a Military and Veterans Initiative. She has led efforts to roll back government regulations that hurt job creators, fight the opioid epidemic, teach internet safety, combat domestic violence and make the office the top law firm for Arkansans. Rutledge serves on committees for Consumer Protection, Criminal Law and Veterans Affairs for the National Association of Attorneys General. She also served as the former Chairwoman of the Republican Attorneys General Association.

A native of Batesville, she is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law. Rutledge clerked for the Arkansas Court of Appeals, was Deputy Counsel for former Governor Mike Huckabee, served as a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in Lonoke County and was an Attorney at the Department of Human Services before serving as Counsel at the Republican National Committee. Rutledge and her husband, Boyce, have one daughter. The family has a home in Pulaski County and a farm in Crittenden County.

Click it or Ticket Campaign begins Monday May 23rd 2022

2022 Click It or Ticket

Step Up and Remind People to Buckle Up       

From May 23-June 5, 2022, state and local law enforcement agencies across the nation are conducting enforcement efforts for motorists who aren't wearing their seat belts. Once again, for this year's Click It or Ticket seat belt mobilization effort, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) is asking all states to participate in the Border to Border (B2B) initiative, a one-day national seat-belt awareness kickoff event coordinated by participating state highway safety offices and their respective law enforcement liaisons. B2B aims to increase law enforcement participation by coordinating highly visible seat belt enforcement and providing seat belt fact sheets for drivers at heavily traveled, highly visible state border checkpoints. 

 

Face the Facts

The national seat belt use rate in 2020 was 90.3%, which is good - but we can do better. The other 9.7% still need to be reminded that seat belts save lives. Among young adults 18 to 34 killed while riding in passenger vehicles in 2020, more than half (60%) were completely unrestrained - one of the highest percentages for all age groups. Men make up the majority of those killed in motor vehicle traffic crashes. In 2020, 67% of the 23,824 passenger vehicle occupants who were killed were men. Men also wear their seat belts at a lower rate than women do - 55% of men killed in crashes were unrestrained, compared to 43% of women killed in crashes.

Bust the Myths

Vehicle type: There seems to be a misconception among those who drive and ride in pickup trucks that their large vehicles will protect them better than other vehicles would in a crash. The numbers say otherwise: 62% of pickup truck occupants who were killed in 2020 were not buckled. That's compared to 47% of passenger car occupants who were not wearing seat belts when they were killed. Regardless of vehicle type, seat belt use is the single most effective way to stay alive in a crash. Seating position: Too many people wrongly believe they are safe in the back seat unrestrained. Fifty percent of all front-seat passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes in 2020 were unrestrained, but 59% of those killed in back seats were unrestrained. Rural versus urban locations: People who live in rural areas might believe that their crash exposure is lower, but in 2020, there were 11,922 passenger vehicle fatalities in rural locations, compared to 11,683 fatalities in urban locations. Out of those fatalities, 52% of those killed in the rural locations were not wearing their seat belts, compared to 49% in urban locations.

Click It or Ticket - Day and Night

High-visibility seat belt enforcement is important 24 hours a day, but nighttime is especially deadly for unbuckled occupants. In 2020, 58% of passenger vehicle occupants killed at night (6 p.m.-5:59 a.m.) were not wearing their seat belts. Click It or Ticket isn't about citations; it's about saving lives. In 2020, there were 10,893 unbuckled passenger vehicle occupants killed in crashes in the United States. To help prevent crash fatalities, we need to step up seat belt enforcement, day and night.

Learn more about the Click It or Ticket mobilization at www.nhtsa.gov/ciot.

 

Attorney General Alert: Don't Let Scam Artists Invade Your Devices

Attorney General Alert: Don't Let Scam Artists Invade Your Devices

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
May 12, 2022

Contact: Amanda Priest
Amanda Priest, (501) 414-2223
Amanda.Priest@ArkansasAG.gov


Attorney General Alert: Don't Let Scam Artists Invade Your Devices

LITTLE ROCK - Attorney General Leslie Rutledge is warning Arkansans of a prevalent tech support scam infecting common electronic devices, such as smart phones, laptops and tablets. This antivirus software scam usually begins with a phone call or pop-up message on the consumer's electronic device. The communication is actually from a fake tech support representative claiming to be from a well-known technology company.

"I urge all Arkansans to be cautious when anyone asks for access to their devices or private information," said Attorney General Rutledge. "Scam artists scour the internet and phonebooks to find unsuspecting victims who are willing to share their sensitive information."

How the scam works is that a representative or message will claim to the consumer that there is a virus infecting a device or that the consumer's virus protection has expired. The consumer is instructed to install software immediately in order to protect the device and private information. Often times, the scammer claims to need sensitive information such as account numbers, date of birth or Social Security number in order to remedy the issue. Even more terrifying, the scammer will con a victim into giving access to the device. When the device is accessed in this way, the scammers install applications that allow remote access to the device any time without the victim's knowledge or permission. The scam artists use this information for illegal activities, such as gaining access to consumer's bank accounts. Scammers will quickly drain the accounts and move on to another unsuspecting victim.

Remember these tips when safely navigating online:

No legitimate company will ever send you an unsolicited email asking for your personal information. If you get an email or pop-up message that asks for personal or financial information, do not reply. Contact the business identified in the original message directly by using the customer service number provided to you on a reliable statement to verify the legitimacy of the message. Do not give sensitive information in response to an unsolicited request. Immediately delete all suspicious emails, and never open email attachments or click on links from unknown sources.

The Attorney General's Office provides a tip card for consumers on how to spot phishing scams, information for parents to spot cyberbullying and tips on internet safety.

For more information and tips to avoid scams and other consumer-related issues, contact the Attorney General's office by calling (800) 482-8982, emailing consumer@arkansasag.gov, or visiting ArkansasAG.gov.

About Attorney General Leslie Rutledge

Leslie Carol Rutledge is the 56th Attorney General of Arkansas. Elected on November 4, 2014, and sworn in on January 13, 2015, she is the first woman and first Republican in Arkansas history to be elected as Attorney General. She was resoundingly re-elected on November 6, 2018. Since taking office, she has significantly increased the number of arrests and convictions against online predators who exploit children and con artists who steal taxpayer money through Social Security Disability and Medicaid fraud. Further, she has held Rutledge Roundtable meetings and Mobile Office hours in every county of the State each year, and launched a Military and Veterans Initiative. She has led efforts to roll back government regulations that hurt job creators, fight the opioid epidemic, teach internet safety, combat domestic violence and make the office the top law firm for Arkansans. Rutledge serves on committees for Consumer Protection, Criminal Law and Veterans Affairs for the National Association of Attorneys General. She also served as the former Chairwoman of the Republican Attorneys General Association.

A native of Batesville, she is a graduate of the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville and the University of Arkansas at Little Rock William H. Bowen School of Law. Rutledge clerked for the Arkansas Court of Appeals, was Deputy Counsel for former Governor Mike Huckabee, served as a Deputy Prosecuting Attorney in Lonoke County and was an Attorney at the Department of Human Services before serving as Counsel at the Republican National Committee. Rutledge and her husband, Boyce, have one daughter. The family has a home in Pulaski County and a farm in Crittenden County.

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