8 Steps to Identify and Avoid Phone Scams

Identify and Avoid Phone Scams

Phone scams are becoming increasingly common as scammers find new ways to target people.

While there are many different phone scams, they all have one thing in common: the caller tries to trick you into giving them money or personal information.

Here are some tips to help you and your loved ones avoid falling for a phone scam.

1. Be suspicious of unsolicited calls.

8 Steps to Identify and Avoid Phone Scams 9

If you didn’t give the caller your number, be wary of taking the call.

Scammers often use “spoofing” techniques to make it look like they’re calling from a legitimate number, especially one in your area, so don’t assume that just because the number looks familiar, the caller is who they say they are.

Many spoofed calls will even mimic the first three digits of your phone number after the area code.

2. Don’t give out personal information.

8 Steps to Identify and Avoid Phone Scams 10

No matter how legitimate the caller may sound, never give out personal information like your Social Security number, bank account information, or credit card number.

Scammers can use this information to commit identity theft or fraud.

Legitimate banks and other institutions will never ask for your PIN, even when conducting business transactions.

3. Be wary of calls asking for money.

8 Steps to Identify and Avoid Phone Scams 11

Scammers will often try to get you to send them money directly, usually through wire transfer or a prepaid debit card.

They may also ask you to buy gift cards and then give them the codes from the back of the cards.

If someone you don’t know asks you for money, it’s almost certainly a scam.

4. Hang up if the caller becomes hostile or pressuring.

8 Steps to Identify and Avoid Phone Scams 12
Dissatisfied client indicates to the employee his mistakes, the professional makes excuses and innocently shrugs. Isolated on a red background.

Most legitimate businesses will understand if you need some time to think about whether or not you want to do business with them.

If the caller becomes angry or pressuring, it’s a good sign that they’re a scammer.

If you ever receive threats or the caller becomes profane, this is a good sign that they are not a reliable representative.

5. Report suspicious calls to the FTC.

8 Steps to Identify and Avoid Phone Scams 13
Police handcuffs lie on the tax form 1040. The concept of problems with the law in the aftermath of non-payment of taxes

If you receive a suspicious call, hang up and report it to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). You can also visit www.ftc.gov/complaint to file a complaint online.

Reporting these fraudulent calls not only helps prevent receiving them in the future, but helps to make others aware of this issue as well since they are often added to an online database. 

6. Use caller ID blocking services.

8 Steps to Identify and Avoid Phone Scams 14
Hacker in front of his computer

You can also download call blocker apps to your mobile phone that will screen calls and help you avoid taking calls from numbers that are likely to be scams.

If you continue to receive scam calls, there are steps you can take to reduce the number of unwanted calls you get.

Many phone companies offer free or low-cost services that allow you to block your number from being displayed on the caller ID of the person you’re calling and also block numbers that have been identified as spam.

7. Be aware of coronavirus scams.

8 Steps to Identify and Avoid Phone Scams 15

Since the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19), scammers have been coming up with new ways to take advantage of people’s fears.

Be on the lookout for fake charities soliciting donations for bogus COVID-19 relief efforts, fake websites selling products that claim to prevent or cure the virus, and phishing emails claiming to be from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) or World Health Organization (WHO).

8. Sign up for the National Do Not Call Registry.

8 Steps to Identify and Avoid Phone Scams 16

If you’re getting too many telemarketing calls, you can sign up for the National Do Not Call Registry, which will stop sales calls from real companies (though it won’t stop scams).

You can register your home or mobile phone number for free at www.donotcall.gov or by calling 1-888-382-1222 from the number you want to register.

By reducing the number of sales calls you receive, you can more easily identify fraudulent calls, since legitimate companies will not call anyone on the National Do Not Call Registry.

Resources

Conclusion

When in doubt, hang up! If you receive a suspicious call, it’s always best to err on the side of caution and hang up.

Don’t engage with the caller in any way, even if they threaten you or try to intimidate you. Remember, scammers can be very convincing, but if you stay aware and don’t let yourself be pressured into anything, you can avoid becoming a victim of fraud.

By Raman

Welcome to my SEO Community. My name is raman and i am co-owner of kwebby.com, Here you will find latest tricks like How to know if someone opened your email and tips of SEO, Free tools etc. I love to share my knowledge as the internet is meant for sharing. Letme know if you have any queries i will love to resolve that.