As the holiday season gets underway in earnest this week, Santa Clara police are a warning the public about phone scammers impersonating police personnel to extort money.

In a statement, the Santa Clara department said it continues to receive reports about scammers, who in some cases will spoof the exact number of a public safety department and threaten their potential victims with a purported arrest warrant in their attempt to solicit money.

YouTube video
An explainer on phone number spoofing and how to avoid being scammed. (Federal Communications Commission/YouTube)

“As a reminder, Santa Clara PD will never ask you for payment or money over the phone,” the law enforcement agency said.

Members of the public who receive such a call are advised to hang up and immediately contact the department at 408-615-4700.