In the last two days, two food establishment owners in Rhode Island have reported receiving fraudulent calls from a man who identified himself as the Director of Health. The man requested their credit card information in order to pay for an upcoming inspection. The food establishment owners were threatened with $500 fines for not providing this information.
Food establishment owners would never receive phone calls from the Rhode Island Department of Health (RIDOH) requesting credit card information to pay for inspections. Food establishment owners are charged annual licensing fees, but these fees are collected by mail.
Any food establishment employee who receives a call requesting credit card information for an inspection should not provide it. They should notify RIDOH immediately at 222-2749. RIDOH is coordinating with the Rhode Island State Police on this matter.