Sonoma County District Attorney Jill Ravitch warns Sonoma County residents of scams involving fraudulently filed applications for Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) assistance.
Sonoma County residents should be aware that FEMA will not send inspectors to your residence unless you have filed an application for assistance. FEMA inspectors will not collect personal identifying information or bank account information at your residence. This information will only be requested when a person fills out the application online or at a Local Assistance Center.
If you have been a victim of this scam, you may also be a victim of identity theft. You should take the following steps: report the crime to the police and ask the police to issue a police report of identity theft and let them know you have reported to the FEMA fraud division; report the fraud to the three major credit bureaus, Equifax at (800) 525-6285, Experian at (888) 397-3742, and TransUnion at (800) 680-7289; carefully review your credit reports for accounts you do not recognize or inquiries you did not authorize; and consider a credit monitoring service or a credit freeze for protection against new accounts being opened in your name. You can find more information on what to do if you suspect you are a victim of identity theft on the Attorney General’s website at https://oag.ca.gov/idtheft/facts/victim-checklist.