Woman says she’s receiving threats after her phone number was stolen by scammers

NORWALK, Ohio- In a city that boasts how neighbors are friends,  some residents say the calls they have recently been receiving are anything but nice. For one woman who says she is the victim of spoofing, the calls could be criminal.

"I know where you live and you better watch your doors and windows and he hung up," said a Norwalk woman who does not want to be identified.

A simple phone call quickly spiraling into a nightmare for the woman who says her phone number was hijacked by scammers. The motive not exactly clear; however, the threats she's received during the past two weeks have her questioning if she's safe at home.

"People out there are getting phone calls from my phone number," said the woman. "Sometimes 20-25 calls a day -- the same number."

Spoofing, defined by the Federal Communications Commission, is when a caller purposefully falsifies information transmitted to a caller ID to disguise their identify. The FCC says spoofing is often used to trick the person on the phone into giving personal information that could then be used in illegal activity; the act in and of itself in most cases is prohibited by law.

Now it's leading Norwalk police to question if spoofing is happening in their city.

"It can be difficult to investigate and if you're able to track it down, it can be somebody on the other side of the country," explained interim Police Chief Mike Conney. "The other side of the world, quite frankly."

However, Chief Conney says it's important to report the calls, especially threats, to police. He calls spoofing often overlooked by victims and under-reported.

"Someone has stolen their number and will use their number to make phone calls to other people."

In this particular case, the victim in her 70s says she deleted the angry voicemails, initially thinking they would not continue. However, days later wishes she kept them as evidence.

"I don't want to be afraid of my own house," said the woman. "I don't want other people to be afraid in their own house either."

FOX 8 News spoke with someone from Spectrum who says "officials are looking into the matter."

You can learn more about spoofing or report an incident to the FCC, HERE.