Phone scams aren’t a new trick. They’ve been around for quite some time. And just when we uncover the latest scam, a new one arises, making it increasingly difficult to warn people. Staying on top of fraud scams can help you protect yourself from becoming a victim.
You answer your phone to hear a stranger on the other end ask “Can you hear me?” If you hear this phrase, it’s important that you hang up immediately. The call is coming from a scammer who is trying to get a recording of your voice. As soon as you say “yes,” the scammer has that recording. He can use the recording of your voice saying “yes” to make purchases or other financial transactions in your name.
When you’re engaging in financial transactions, banking or shopping over the phone, saying “yes” often represents signing a verbal contract. Once the scammer has your voice recording, he or she can use it to confirm account changes, transfer money or make purchases in your name. Pretty scary right?
Here’s How To Avoid A Phone Scam:
- Don’t answer phone calls from numbers you don’t recognize. If you answer the phone when an unfamiliar number is calling, this lets criminals know that your number is valid. This can leave you open to more scammers in the future.
- If you do decide to answer the phone when an unknown number is calling, be cautious, especially if the caller is asking questions that prompt a “yes” answer from you. These might include “Can you hear me?” or “Are you the homeowner?” Instead of answering yes, try asking “Who are you and why do you want to know?”
- Try changing the settings on your phone to automatically send unknown numbers to voicemail. Scammers very rarely leave voice messages! If you have no message, you won’t have any reason to call them back.
- Don’t give your personal information to strangers, even if someone calls claiming to work for your bank or your car insurance company. If you weren’t expecting the call, don’t hand out your information. If there’s a problem, meet them at your bank or insurance company for a face-to-face conversation instead.
- Don’t feel bad about hanging up on a stranger. You can never be too careful! Hanging up can help save you from becoming a victim of a scam.