Beware of phone scams...

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the JabberwocK
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Beware of phone scams...

Post by the JabberwocK »

I'm not sure how much of a problem this is in countries outside the USA, but phone scams are becoming rather rampant over here.

My parents were recently scammed out of $1,000 by a phone scam. My Dad is typically very astute and cautious, but he fell prey to this one because it was local and provided all kinds of accurate information from the local law enforcement office. The phone scammer informed him that my Mom had not shown up for jury duty despite repeat mailed notices and there was a warrant for her arrest.

My neighbor recently was called by a representative claiming they were from the local energy utility company and that her electricity was going to be shut off because she was past due with her bill.

Scam artists have graduated from Craig's List Western Union tricks and are now being extremely aggressive and calling from local agencies with lots of accurate information at their disposal.

I know it seems like common sense, but never give credit card info or payment of any kind over the phone to someone you didn't call yourself and know with a certainty who they are. Never go to a web site following instructions from someone over the phone who called you. The website may appear authentic but is likely a fake.

Most importantly, warn your loved ones and elderly who are likely the most susceptible to these types of despicable crimes.

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Location: Florida

Re: Beware of phone scams...

Post by thedarkness »

Phone scams like the ones you describe have become quite common in Florida recently. Apparently, the perps robo-dial house phone numbers all day looking for someone to answer.
“The world is indeed full of peril and in it there are many dark places.” - LOTR

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Re: Beware of phone scams...

Post by Neric »

Scams are getting more and more sophisticated, we get robo calls often enough - even though we're on a do not call list.

Best to be careful with anyone regardless of if it's online or on the phone or even at your door. It's far too easy to find information on someone you want to target.

Lake Town Geezer
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Re: Beware of phone scams...

Post by Lake Town Geezer »

My suggestion is if someone phones you who you dont know - hang up. In my case, I like playing 'jokes' on them over the phone:

For example, the commonest start to a scammers scamming process is to ask 'Can you confirm your name?'. My answer to this is usually 'yes'. That's it - nothing else.

Then they will say something like, 'Can you confirm your name is Mr X, of Y address?'. To which I answer 'Yes'. Nothing else. Even if the name is completely incorrect (which it usually is).

After several answers of 'Yes', and nothing else they usually hang up.

TBH it shows how vulnerable we all are to ruthless crooks.

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Re: Beware of phone scams...

Post by CorumMc »

I've done similar stuff when I am in the mood. But honestly the worst thing we can do is acknowledge the caller in anyway because it confirms the number dialed is live.

Most calls today are auto-generated by algorithms fishing for a live number. When one is confirmed as reaching a person, that becomes a source of revenue to be sold to other spammers. Whether that person was a pain in the neck or not is not something they'd store on their list of criteria. :)

The best bet is to answer any unknown call with silence and let them announce themselves first, then hang up when you get that tell-tale pause before the operator gets on.

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