APPLETON, Wis. (WFRV) – A few Appleton residents say they’ve been contacted by the mayor of Appleton, but the mayor says he isn’t reaching out.
“Specifically, the text says ‘this is Jake and I have a question for you about the city of Appleton or something like that,” said Jake Woodford Mayor of Appleton.
Some people in Appleton have gotten text messages from what looks like Appleton’s Mayor Jake Woodford, but it is not really the mayor.
“No, we didn’t send those out, I didn’t send this out, the city is not conducting a survey right now so I suspect that this is some sort of scam or fraudulent activity,” explained Mayor Woodford.
The text messages have a link attached to them and ask people to share their thoughts on different issues in the city, but Mayor Woodford thinks whoever is behind the fraud wants to steal personal information.
“Often times these are phishing attacks that try to get people to click on a link or provide personal information, and often times what they’ll do is use a trusted or known connection to try to trick people into participating, clicking the link and providing information,” stated Woodford.
The real Mayor Woodford is asking anyone who gets a text message to ignore it and block the number. He also said the city would not try to contact the public through text messages.
“Don’t click on links from people that you don’t know or if you’re not expecting to get contacted don’t click on links. From the city’s perspective, if the city is going to be asking for information or conducting a survey, we will communicate with the public across multiple channels to let people know that we are doing that survey, that we are doing that work,” explained Woodford.
Authorities are attempting to locate the sender of the messages.