Last week two impersonators visited a soldiers family on a military post in Ft. Campbell, TN. They told the family that the soldier had been killed. One was dressed in Class A "dress green" Army uniform and the other as a civilian clergy, so they were very believable. The soldier as it turned out was thankfully fine. Surprisingly to me this isn't a new thing! The American Red Cross reports that as far back as 2003 family member's of deployed service members received phone calls from someone claiming to be "a representative from the Red Cross." They would inform family members that their relative was MIA.
The scams are apparently designed to get the service members Social Security number and date of birth. Sometimes they will say the service member is injured and treatment can't begin until the personal information is verified.
It is a federal crime punishable by up to 5 years in prison for someone to pretend to be a representative of the Red Cross. In addition the Stop Terrorist and Military Act of 2004 makes it a criminal offense to be convey false information about the status of a service member during a time of armed conflict.
Whether it's just a sick joke or an act of fraud, these lowlifes need to be brought to justice and prosecuted fully!