East Texas deputies warn of FEMA scam

East Texas deputies warn of FEMA scam

HARRISON CO., TX (KSLA) - The Harrison County Sheriff's Office is warning residents of a scam that appears to be targeting flood victims.

The scammers are reportedly calling residents on Caddo Lake, stating that FEMA will make direct deposits to bank accounts and offer monetary assistance, authorities say.

But, sheriff's deputies say the area is not a FEMA declared disaster area at this time.

Residents are reminded that FEMA will not make telephone calls to residents and offer assistance to them without the required documentation filed after the federal disaster is declared.

Duane Meyers has evacuated three times this month. He says the ordeal is overwhelming, but there's no way he'd fall for a crook's schemes.

"I'm pretty sure FEMA is not going to be calling me," said Meyers.

He says he is keeping an eye on the process and others should too.

"Governor Abbott declared this a disaster area, several days ago and he sent the paper work to Washington. Our understanding is FEMA will not take any action, until Obama signs the declaration and he has not signed that yet," added Meyers.

He says he doesn't understand why anyone would prey on people who have already lost so much.

"Lowest of the low, there are people who have been out here their whole life, they've lost everything, this is an epic flood event, it's really sad people would be out here trying to take advantage of a situation like this."

The Harrison County Emergency Management Director, Thomas Mock, is compiling information to forward to FEMA. This is only a state disaster and has been documented by Harrison County and approved for state assistance, only, Texas authorities say.

Sheriff McCool states: "Do not give any personal banking information, Social Security numbers, Credit Card numbers, or any information to a person calling on the telephone and asking you for this information. The caller will make every effort to scam you and deplete your bank account and steal your personal information. They are very slick in their conversation, but they are NOT calling you to assist you".

Harrison County has established information on the county website, harrisoncountytexas.org, with forms and information regarding State of Texas assistance.

Copyright 2016 KSLA. All rights reserved.