CAIRO — The Grady County Sheriff's Office is warning residents of scammers who are attempting to solicit personal information by falsely presenting themselves as members of law enforcement.

Capt. Daniel Singletary said authorities have received several complaints within the past two weeks in regards to phone calls where an individual claiming to be with the Grady County Sheriff's Office attempts to gather personal information in order to "verify" an arrest warrant.

According to the sheriff's office, the callers inform the victims that the sheriff's office has a warrant for their arrest that can be satisfied by paying a fine over the phone.

Singletary said the scammers are attempting to collect credit card information, but are also looking to "verify" the false warrants by collecting names, dates of birth and Social Security numbers.

The sheriff's office never calls people to solicit personal information, Singletary said.

"If we've got a warrant on you, we'd just come get you personally," he said.

Individuals who receive the fraudulent calls are urged to immediately contact 911.

"If you don't report it, it didn't happen in the eyes of everybody else," Singletary said. "You've got to have a law enforcement report in order to get anything done."

Residents are further urged to never give any personal information to solicitors over the phone.

Singletary himself has not heard any of the fraudulent calls, but the sheriff's office has received a handful of complaints since Jan. 13 from Residents who were solicited.

Though the sheriff's office is unaware of any individuals in Grady County who complied with the scammers, Singletary said a similar incident occurred recently in Thomas County where a victim provided the caller with some personal information after receiving a nearly identical solicitation.

Investigators looking into the situation have attempted reverse-searching the phone numbers in order to identify the perpetrators, but the scammers appear to be using software to hide the actual numbers that are placing the calls — a process known as "spoofing."

Singletary said it is likely that the scammers are not even located within Grady County. As such, the likelihood of ever catching the criminals is "pretty slim."

"All you can do is be vigilant," Singletary said. "Keep an eye on your credit. Have a credit monitoring service where you can keep an eye on it. If there's anything suspicious, report it immediately."

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