Clerk issues scam warnings

ELIZABETHTOWN There will always be people willing to resort to trickery to make a buck off someone else, and Essex County Clerk Joseph Provoncha is worried about two particular schemes costing county residents plenty. Provoncha said one questionable practice occurs when out-of-state companies offer to help people receive copies of their property deeds. The letter requests $60-100 for a copy. Its legal, it's just the prices are so high - its concerning county clerks throughout the states, said Provoncha. While its important for people to have a copy of their deed, Provoncha said it is much cheaper to purchase them through the county clerks office. Certified copies of deeds cost between $5-10 dollars. Provoncha said he hasnt heard of any letters being sent to Essex County residents, but people in Erie, Albany and Orange counties have received the solicitations. For information on purchasing a copy of a deed, go online to www.co.essex.ny.us. Provoncha, who also serves as the Essex County Commissioner of Jurors, said an identity theft scheme has also been brought to his attention. He explained that people in several New York counties had received phone calls supposedly from the Commissioner of Jurors. The calls are placed to people who werent summoned. When the call recipient states they didnt receive a summons, the caller asks for a name and social security number to fix the record. Provoncha said people shouldnt give out the information. Notifications about missed jury duty are usually sent by mail. He very rarely makes phone calls, and will never request a social security number.

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