Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Ten Ways You Can Be Phone Scammed

Initially, I was not aware that there were so many telephone scams happening around the globe, especially in the U.S.A. and in the U.K. It was so rampant and I thought I should do more blogs in getting out the words to as many people as possible to create awareness and do my share in stopping these horrible scams.  There are lots of ways how one can be scammed. I will list the ten most popular and how the scammers go about with each one of them.

1. Fake Bank Alert Messages
A fake message from a local bank calls and tells you to call a free toll number because your card is being suspended. When you do the call, the one at the other end will ask for your account information including your name, date of birth, credit card number, and other information. Once they get hold of these details, they commit identity theft charging your credit card, applying for loans, applying for new credit cards under your name, and issuing fraudulent checks.

2. Travel Frauds.
These scams offer travel packages that sounds so legitimate but are not. The scams have different variations. Skilled telemarketers will call you and inform you that you have received a free travel package and to be able to be eligible, you should join their travel club. After joining, you will find out later that you are required to pay a fee to make a reservation. You will soon learn that you did not earn the free trip because your reservation was not confirmed or that you must meet hard-to-comply or expensive conditions.

3. Loan Scams.
A telemarketer promises a consumer for a loan or credit card on very attractive packages. The caller will persuade the victim that he just need to provide his checking account information or pay a processing fee to avail of the loan or credit card package. The caller would even offer free laptop, iPod, or any hot gadget to make it more attractive. After the payment is made by the victim, the company disappears with the victim left with an empty checking account and non-sufficient funds (NSF) bank fees.

4. Free Prize Distribution Centers
These scams work by calling a consumer and telling him that he has won hot and attractive freebies because of buying items from a grocery store or other items bought via the internet. When the victim is convinced, the caller would then ask the cosumer to verify his identity by giving personal inforation such as PIN numbers, and account information such as checking account numbers or credit card numbers. When the caller got these information, the victim is now most likely a target of identity theft. The criminal can make loans under his name and use his credit cards for purchases.

5. Sweepstakes and Lottery Frauds
A caller will call to inform you that you have won in the lottery. Many won, actually, because lots of people receive the same call. The caller will entice you to make a relatively small fee for the processing of your prize, handling fee, or sales tax, which he will say is so small compared to the huge amount you won in the sweepstakes or lottery. After you made the payment, you will never hear from them again. No lottery winnings for you.

6. Bogus Charities or Fund Raising Operations
These scams work when someone calls you and ask for donations for a certain charity or fund raising to help victims of whatever latest natural disaster happened in the world, or fund raising for a very humanely cost.

7. International Phone Call Scams
These scams work when a caller leaves you a message asking you to call a number which appears to be just a local long-distance call. The reasons you should make the call are because you won in the lottery or that a relative from another area has had an accident. And because there are so many phone numbers that look like local numbers, you make the calls. Once you do, the other end will do everything to keep you on the line as long as he can. When your phone bill comes, you will now learn that you have been charged $2500 or more for that call.

8. Cramming
"Cramming" is when your telephone bill pops up with charges for voice mailing, paging, or club membership. This scam works when you are asked to return a missed call because it is your lucky day and you have won a free trip to somewhere. When the call is made, an automated system is activated and you are suddenly enrolled in a program or club and your phone bill was placed with a charge. The crammer just picks any phone number and place charges on your bill through your phone company claiming that you agreed to purchase some service.

9. Get Rich Quick Schemes
The scammer will allure the victim, most often are stay at home moms and entrepreneurs and would be promised great earning via a business done from home, usually with Ebay, he will say, or by making sales calls. The caller will tell the victim that he is required to make a initial investment. When the payment is made, the company disappears.

10. Auto Warranties
This is usually a robo call. The recording usually starts with "This is your final notice. The warranty on your car is about to expire...". The caller does not have any idea whether you have a car or a warranty at that. After the recording is played, you are connected to a live oprator who is so talented he will persuade you to make payments using high-pressure tactics.

Day by day, more and more new scams happen via phone calls. Keep your guard up. Get the caller ID and verify the phone number. Get as many information about the number and report to authorities. Inform your family, friends, acquaintances about these scams. Email this article to them. Let us all help one another in stopping these scams by creating awareness to many.

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