The Iowa Department of Public Safety is warning Iowans about a "hitman" e-mail scam. Spokesperson Jim Saunders while the message is disturbing, it is a hoax. "This one is a little bit more disturbing than the ones we have seen in recent years where people will pose as a creditor and solicit personal information from folks," Saunders told Radio Iowa.
"This one is actually a threat indicating to the receiver that a contract has been taken out on their life and that a hitman has been hired to kill them unless they remit some sort of payment or provide personal financial data." The so-called phishing scam has popped up around the state in recent weeks.
Saunders says citizens have reported the e-mail to several local law enforcement agencies and to the Iowa Attorney General’s Office. Saunders says anyone who receives the e-mail should not reply. "That just validates to the person sending it that they’ve got an actual person on the other end and they’ll just continue with the harassment," Saunders said.
He’s also encouraging Iowans who receive the e-mail to file a report with their local law enforcement agency and forward the e-mail to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center.