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Have you gotten a call from someone saying they’re from a Chinese Consulate office? If so, you’re not alone – based on reports to the FTC and the real Chinese Consulates. But here’s the thing: it’s not a Chinese Consulate office calling. It’s a scammer. These callers seem to be reaching people with Chinese last names but, as we know, scammers can change tactics quickly.

Here’s what’s happening now: people across the country have reported getting a call or message saying they have to pick up a package at the Chinese Consulate office. Or, they need you to give them information to avoid being in trouble with the Chinese Consulate. Then the caller asks for your bank or credit card information, or tells you to make a bank transfer to them.

Regardless of who you are or who says they’re calling, never send money to anyone who calls and asks you to send it. Never give your Social Security number, your bank or credit card number, or other sensitive information to anyone who calls and asks for it. Same thing if they email or message you through a social media platform such as WeChat: just don’t respond. That’s a scam. And neither the real Chinese Consulates, nor the Chinese Embassy, will ever call you to ask for money.

If you get a call or message like this, hang up or delete it, and then tell the FTC. If you have business with the real Chinese Consulate and you’re worried, contact the real Chinese Consulate by looking up your local office’s number. But, whatever you do, don’t give out your information – or your money – to anyone who contacts you out of the blue.

To read a version of this blog post in Simplified Chinese, click here.


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The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

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September 12, 2018

In reply to by LLC

I had a very similar phone call from 213-807-8088 saying the last notice for me to pick up an important document, when asked what the document is, I was told that my entrance to China will be blocked after 9/20/208. I then asked the person to check what the reason is, I am told that someone by the name of Wang, Ming-Fong who entered in China from Shanghai was found having 5 faked passport in her passion, and one of them is mine. When then the person passed the phone to his boss who said that he had no authority to remove my entrance restriction, which would need to report to Shanghai Public Security Office, and he is nice to connect me to: 86 262906290 the Changning Branch where the police officer talked with me with recording on, with the intention of writing an office case report to the headquarter for investigation and clearing the case. His name given to me as Officer# 02780, name: Chen, Lo-then. I provided him with my driver’s license number and full name both in English name and Chinese name, since I was traveling, I do not have my passport with me and I have only visited China twice in recent 16 years and never had a Chinese passoport. After a very lengthy and friendly conversation with questions regarding my family, surrounding details, which he did not ask for my home address nor names. Etc. After I answered all his questions. He paused the phone to report to his headquarters and called me back asking me why they found a bank acccount under my name (my driver’s license number) with a large amount of $$$ in a bank which I have never heard of, sounds like China Construction Bank?? And the account has been involved in a huge international money laundries criminal investigation. My name was also found in a criminal. XXLi who is the chief leader of this huge laundry money crimes. And many Chinese people have been victim of this crime. He keeps on wanting to tell me the seriousness of my case... This took over 2 hours time on my cell phone. About that time, I had to go out-with the family whom I am visiting, so I told him I have to stop. He argued saying this is most serious criminal case I need to stay with him on the phone, if I do not take him serious then he can not help me with the case, the national court will take action. Later, I found out this is a big scam which has been going on and widely publicized in Chinese newspapers which I do not read and totally unaware of such scam. I was very worried about giving out my driver’s licens number and my name. Later, found out may others have such bad experience as well. I found a website Identify theft resource center most helpful. They have a live advisor could talk with and gave me instructions what actions to take to protect myself. I tried to call the Los Angelse Chinese Consulate office (their phone number on their website) and could not go though at all. I don’t know what is going on with their office. Unfortunately. such incident certainly gave me a very very bad taste of China
another victim
November 19, 2018

In reply to by LLC

I run into the exactly the same thing this morning and was almost fulled by them. I gave out my passport number, DOB and my name. Now, I looked back and think. There were warnings everywhere. My husband searched FCC and located all the reported cases. I texted back to the scammer, told him I have reported them to police and warned him not to use my personal information anywhere otherwise they would be punished. He threatened me that he got all my personal information and would make my life miserable. I am applying a new passport next week.
May 19, 2018

In reply to by FBL

I got almost the same scam. I made the same mistake, gave them my driver license number and my birthday so they can verify me. I should verify them. When they started mention that I am a suspect of a serious international financial crime. I got shock and decided that I should talk to my lawyer and told them that I'll have my lawyer handle the case. They stopped then I realized that I got scammed.
July 11, 2018

In reply to by FBL

Here is what happened to me lately. On the 9th of July, I got a call from so called 'Chinese Consolate' in NYC with the number 212-244-6317; the lady's name is Shang, Liping, who connected me to the detectives in the Police Department of Beijing Eastern District. From Beijing PD (phone number: 8408 1114). I was told that a lady named Xu, Feng entered China with 5 passports and one of them was mine. She is a criminal conducting money laundry and lots of more illegal activities. I was told she used my identity to place over 2.6 million Chinese yuan to my account. I told them that how many accounts that I have and roughly how much money in them and there is no such thing like deposit of approximately $400 to $500 thousand to any of my account. And the sum-up of all my accounts will not reach that amount. They wanted me to go back to China helping them make investigation on the crimes. I told them I can help them provide information that they need but not ready to go back and stay there for at least 6 months (in jail). I called the Chinese Consulate in NYC the next day. I was told the 212 number and the person’s name are all faked, and the call was a scam call for sure. My mistakes were giving them the number of my driver’s license and telling them how many bank accts I have (but not account numbers). Like FBL, I’m trying to warn decent people in the US beware of the criminals that talked to me and be on alert all the time. As a Chinese by origin, I’m really ashamed that a group of my countrymen are trying to do devastating damage to the lovely country and the people in the country. I pray that they are definitely to be caught in no time.
April 26, 2018
My roommate and I got these calls today. We live in Washington, DC but have Hawaii phone numbers. The scammer's number was 808-595-1913. Neither of us have Chinese surnames.
Dori A
April 27, 2018
I got a call from the irs saying I owe money to them that I’ve gotten from 2015. If I owe money how come they are reaching out to me now? And if I did owe money they usually take it from my refund automatically. I’m confused. I definitely think this is a scam for my money but then again I got a bill in the mail from the irs saying I owe them money and it looks like a legit letter but I’m a little skeptical about it. I called the irs and was told I don’t owe nothing but when I call again to speak to other people they say I do I so confused.
July 02, 2018

In reply to by Dori A

The IRS will NOT call you, ever. This is an old scam.
April 27, 2018
I get at least two of these per day. I hangup. I do not speak Mandarin. It has been going on for at least a month.
Don't speak Ch…
April 27, 2018
April 25, 2018, I received a telephone call at 10:21 am., from I telephone number I did not recognize. So, like many of you I did not answer. The caller left a message. Of course, I listened. It was a recording in Chinese; I could not understand. When I looked up the number from Caller ID the call appeared to come from the Chinese Consulate in Houston, Texas. I live in Houston and I live a couple blocks from the consulate.
April 25, 2019

In reply to by Don't speak Ch…

I received this call today at 11:25AM today April 25th. I work less than a block from the Chinese Consulate in Houston.
Others do this…
April 27, 2018
I have gotten numerous calls like this but not in Chinese and not spoofing the Chinese consulate, but they threaten to send “the local cops to take me in custody” if I don’t make arrangements with them right away. It’s usually some tax debt they assert. The way I know it’s a scam is the same way it was obvious the Nigerian millions emails were: their English is “off”, they use phrases no native speaker or real official caller would, but that may be why the Chinese one is so successful at convincing victims, they avoid that problem by speaking in their own language, no mistakes. I have no idea where they are coming from, though once when I responded just so I could tell them off, a man with an Indian accent answered. This is becoming a worldwide problem, there has to be some way to deal with it, and these people have NO respect for Do Not Call registries.
April 27, 2018
I get phone calls from a 212 number with someone speaking Chinese. I hang up and block the number but the calls continue from different numbers.
April 27, 2018
Got robo called by this number 858-533-4566 at 11:05 am pst today. This is the second time in two weeks.
Karen in Queens
April 27, 2018
Call from 917-692-0414.
April 28, 2018
I receive a phone call from 212-840-7573 as well as other 212 numbers with a Chinese speaking person. I’ve blocked several of the Chinese Robocalls though once your number has been added to their database the calls will continue.
April 28, 2018
I’ve received a similar scam call from (240) 315-2265‬ and ‭(202) 495-2266‬. They claim they are from the Chinese Embassy that Shanghai Police Department reported to them that someone from the Shanghai Airport was carrying many cash cards and was blocked by the police. One of the cards had my name on it. The scammers asked me to report this to Shanghai Police Department. When they transferred my call to the “police”, I realized this as a scam and hung up.
May 31, 2018

In reply to by Susan

I had similar story as well. Said Shanghai police caught someone who has my name on that carry a lot cash . When I refused. She start thereaten me and than I hanged up.
April 23, 2019

In reply to by Susan

I received a similar scam call today with a similar story, but it is not about credit cards, it was my passport. They also transferred me to Shanghai Police department (the local time is 1:30am in Shanghai I figured). Their accent is from southeast Asia, so I started to question their accent and told them I believe this is fraud. I then hang up.
FTC-Do Something
April 28, 2018
With existing technology, why doesn't FTC track these scammers and do something to stop them. After several calls, this is unwanted abuse.
April 28, 2018
They tried calling my phone. However, I do not speak Chinese so I was unaffected by their scamming attempts. They are using numbers from all over North America (Even B.C. Canada)
April 30, 2018
Same thing happened to me just now. I press 1 what is the consequences.
May 02, 2018
I don't know how to stop these calls...does anyone know? I got 6 calls all the same Chinese recording from 6 different #s just in the last half hour...they keep coming in. 202-495-2905 846-843-6799 247-264-0625 522-299-6709 202-495-2935
May 03, 2018

In reply to by moontears2

As soon as the call comes through, answer and hang up immediately. Don't even let a full second pass. This will make it look like you have a non-working number. The calls will start decreasing soon.
May 02, 2018
I got a scam call from 202-595-1326 today. One female and one male voice, claiming to have a message for me from the Chinese Embassy. According to them apparently someone has stolen one of my bank account and smuggled it to China. All they wanted me to do is to file a police report with the Police in Shanghai. I don't know what they are trying to get from me.
May 03, 2018
832-213-7888, the guy claims to be from Chinese Consulate in Houston, TX and actually speaks Chinese. He says "hello?" in Chinese and when I replied "hello" in Chinese he's like "oh you are Chinese" and with a heavy accent too. I thought it's really obvious sign when he speaks in Chinese first then pretend he can speak English. I just hung up when he starts asking for my name and personal information.
May 06, 2018
I am a former customer of Fido, my surname is not chinese and I live in Canada, yet I've received half a dozen of these calls in the past few days. Incredibly annoying. Called my current provider who wasn't able to offer any advice that I hadn't already thought of myself. So tired of these robocalls.
Very annoyed r…
May 08, 2018
Recieved the call from 212=695-9726. After pressing the number 9, I was connected to the live scammer. She spoke to me in Mandarin Chinese and I responded in kind. I told her you can be serious about this. I told her that she didn't really have anything for me. I asked her who she was and she told me "Angela Baby". I asked her to spell it and she did. I told her she didn't spell it correctly (as a joke) and she hung up on me.
May 08, 2018
Commenting only to let people know that I received a Chinese consulate robo-call scam from: 716-378-6616. I've only ever heard about the existence of such calls from the FTC which has been fairly good about getting the word out to the Asian community -- I hung up the second the recording began playing. Good job FTC!
Annoyed by recording
May 09, 2018
Received a call in Chinese today, 716 801-6907 Usually it is a 212 number
May 09, 2018
I am getting bombarded by these phone calls, I am not Chinese and I don't speak the language, so I would usually hang up or delete the message, but I finally got curious and got a friend to listen to it...they said it was the Chinese consulate calling. They called from 212-695-3775
May 22, 2018
I've gotten mobile chinese calls from the following numbers 631-815-7527 631-820-2766 614-531-9310 631-818-3115 631-815-7170 631-815-9402
May 09, 2018
Received a message on my cell phone in Chinese today from 212-695-3151. I don't speak Chinese or have a Chinese name. My wife received a similar call last week on her cell phone.
Don't speak Chinese
May 10, 2018
So does anyone have any suggestions as to how to stop these "Chinese Consulate" calls? I'm getting as many as 6 a day and never from the same number. I have a CA area code but live in FL so sometimes they've called at 10 at night! It's getting SO old!!!
tired of scam calls
May 10, 2018
Received a call from 212-334-1064 with an automated recording in Chinese. Sounds like it may be this scam. I don't speak Chinese but assume I was targeted because of my last name.
May 11, 2018
Received a call from Chinese consulate yesterday. 303-540-5754.
Houston We hav…
May 12, 2018
713-520-1462 called this morning on Saturday and left a message in Chinese. Many Americans have been receiving the recorded message phone calls from this number and complaining on white pages. The phone number belongs to Chinese Consulate General in Houston, but if this phone call is really made from them? Please do investigate on this number has been used to scam and defraud people.
Houston We hav…
May 12, 2018
713-520-1462 called this morning on Saturday and left a message in Chinese. Many Americans have been receiving the recorded message phone calls from this number and complaining on white pages. The phone number belongs to Chinese Consulate General in Houston, but if this phone call is really made from them? Please do investigate on this number has been used to scam and defraud people.
May 22, 2018

212-132-6419 is a # the scammers are using. I am not Chinese and I have no knowledge of the language. The calls and messages are a daily occurrence.

May 15, 2018
Ours was not robo-call but an actual woman speaking in Mandarin. The number was the same as the Chinese consolate in LA. Spoofed it somehow i guess. Said something about the letter coming from Fujin province
May 16, 2018
0495 990 016:- I had a call yesterday (Wed 16 May 2018) with a recorded message saying it was the "Chinese Consulate" by this number which was a mobile number... 0495 990 016 which I quickly hung up on and then blocked! My surname is definitely not of Chinese origin nor Asian so I think they're targeting anyone .... Grubs!!
Ally s
May 17, 2018
I got a phone call today saying that I needed to call the Chinese consulate I laughed and hung up my last name is certainly not even close to being Chinese the number the rang me was 262 288 769..
May 18, 2018
Received a call that went to voicemail on 5/18/18 from 212.244.5192 and 5/12/18 from 212.145.7964. Both voicemails sounded like Chinese, though I don’t have confidence in my ability to identify asian languages.
May 18, 2018
Being getting the chinese consulate calls for months and months now from all sorts of number. Stating that this is the last call be4 they going to me I should arrange to pick up the parcel or else I might lost my status of staying in the USA. I dont know what kind of drug r they on I was born here. The only way I will lost my citizenship is if i give it up. N secondly I am not from mainland China. My parents are from taiwan!!
Andy L.
May 18, 2018
Just received phone call from same Chinese embassy. But now, they change to DHL package service. It’s same group as they claim Chinese Embassy. How is FCC help people like us, resolve this issue. Phone numbers are generated by computer and when you called back the number isn’t available. I am on do not call list. And I had block over 10 numbers from this types of calls.
Bob in Tx
May 18, 2018
Houston We have a Chinese Scammer. 713-520-1462 called this afternoon my wife answered it,they spoke in Chinese. She hung up. They called back, did not answer, Blocked and deleted number
May 18, 2018
Today I have received 7 (212-244-9193, 212-244-9382,212-244-9647, 646-209-9557,+65 55353322122449684) calls regarding to "a package from Chinese Consulates and DHL "by using Chinese, I wish government will do something soon. These calls drive me nuts.
May 19, 2018
I lived in LA and received a phone call from “the Chinese Consulate” 1-626-888-6331 indicating that they got a notification from Beijing Public Safety Police (北京公安局). They arrested someone at the Peiking international airport and this person has possession of s cream US passport and one of them is mine. They asked if I ever lost my passport and I told them never and I have mine in my possession. He then gave me my case number and transfer me to the Beijing Police Dept International Affairs unit 010-6944-0212 to make personal statement for them to start investigation. They said there was an immigration restriction on my passport which will affect my traveling. I said I have no plan traveling to China using my US passport. I questioned this police man on whether China could restrict my traveling in and out of the US as that is not their jurisdiction. I told him that prior to him getting the recording ready (for me to make a statement) I would like to check with US Dept of States. He started getting irritated and said that I was an arrogant Chinese American who thinks the Chinese government has nothing better to do than bugging us. At the point, I hung up. I called Department of State to make sure my passport has no issue. I called official phone number 12138078088 of LA’s Chinese Consulate which has a recorded message saying this type of call is a scam. Also State Dept gave me info about FTC.
May 20, 2018
I got the same phone call at least 5 times for last two months, on diffrent area code numbers. First two were 626 and 213 area code received on my house phone, the last two were this morning on my smart phone. But from some where in US. I was thinking how they got my cell phone number ?
Jake in LA
May 21, 2018
add another two numbers on the list 2132449392, 6266791885 They also asked me to go this address 520 4th street, room 202, Los Angeles The pitch is that my Chinese bank card was found in a criminal's bag and they want me to explain, and potential pay something I guess. I asked way too many questions to verify their identity and told them that card was canceled (which actually was...coincidence...) and the guy finally hung up on me. His Taiwanese accent is too suspicious, and the address he told me isn't the Consulate, either.