Texas County Memorial Hospital said Friday one of its department phone numbers is apparently being spoofed by an auto-attendant recorded phone message offering credit card deals.

Stuart Mitchell, information systems director at TCMH, said the calls are not affiliated with TCMH in any way.

“These complaints we received from the community showed a 967 number that happened to be in a specific TCMH department,” Mitchell said. “The number used by the robo-caller was grabbed as a random number to appear ‘local’ on the recipient’s caller ID.”

Commonly referred to as “neighbor spoofing,” certain companies are utilizing local phone prefixes with randomly organized line numbers in the place of the actual phone number when making automated phone calls. The idea behind neighbor spoofing is to make a call that might otherwise be ignored appear to be locally based.

“This does not seem to be targeted at TCMH. A TCMH number has been randomly used by a company that is not the hospital or representing the hospital,” Mitchell said.

Mitchell cautioned the public to be careful answering phone calls with local numbers.

“However, if you receive a call from a TCMH number, do not give out any personal information unless you actually know the person is employed by TCMH and has a reason to call you,” he said.

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