According to the Federal Trade Commission, 74% of fraud cases begin with a telephone call. Criminal fraud occurs over the phone when people use social engineering to learn your private financial and personal information.
At some point everyone has received a questionable phone call from a stranger, asking for your private information. Although it seems obvious that you should not reveal your information, these phone scammers can be convincing. Someone being scammed is more likely to be forthcoming with their private information if the caller already has some basic information, like their name.
An easy way to protect yourself and others from phone scams is to ask the caller to verify their legitimacy. You can do this by asking the caller information that only you and the real company would know, such as your account number. Additionally, if you do not recognize the phone number calling you, it is incredibly easy to search the phone number online to verify its legitimacy.
Phone Scam Protection Do’s and Don’ts
- Do hang up if you are suspicious of a caller
- Do learn to recognize common phone scams, including:
- Imposter, debt relief, and credit repair calls
- Free trial or prize calls
- Business investment or charity donation calls
- Do slow down and ask questions- legitimate businesses will answer them, while scammers will pressure you to commit right away
- Do register for the National Do Not Call Registry, if you still receive telemarketing calls after doing so they are most likely scam calls
- Don’t answer calls from unknown numbers
- Don’t follow instructions like “Press 1 to get off the call list”
- Don’t return calls from unknown numbers
- Don’t say anything if a caller asks “Can you hear me?”, as this is a common way for scammers to get a recording of your voice saying “yes” as proof of purchase
If you are worried about your network security, Simplicity offers a broad range of security services to ensure that your data is protected. For more information on how Simplicity can help secure your network, explore our website’s Security Information Page.