Phone scams: Feeling safe on the other end of the line

KAMC News

A phone call from an unknown number is one many people hesitate to answer. Often times, on the other line, it is a phone scammer trying to get the individual’s information or money. This can be a scary situation, especially when they know details about a person’s life.

“When he first had me on the phone, he asked for my social security number,” said a phone scam victim, who did not want to reveal her name.

In the phone call, she was told an abandoned car in her name was found in South Texas with “cocaine and blood” inside. While she did not believe this, she said she had lost multiple social security cards in her past, so it was possible her identity was stolen.

“At the end, he told me, for $500 I can get the warrant lifted. He told me the FBI and everyone was going to be here,” she said. 

This victim released the last four digits of her social security to the scammer, but nothing else. However, she was scared after this encounter.

“I was balling. I was crying my eyes out. He had me freaked out. I am a lawful citizen,” she said.

However, Greg Lender, the president and CEO of the Better Business Bureau said these calls are nothing to be concerned about.

“The scammers giving you a call are usually in a different country. They are not going to come get you,” said Lender.

After identifying a phone call is a scam, Lender suggested discontinuing the conversation and hanging up the phone.

“If you get in a situation like this where you get in one of these very aggressive calls, just take a step back. Remember, if there is some kind of warrant out for your arrest, they are not going to call you and demand money over the phone,” he said. 

However, if it seems the scammer has more than just public information, including phone numbers, addresses, and names, he suggested putting a freeze on one’s credit report.

Scam phone calls come in many forms, he said. In order to stay safe, he emphasized never giving any personal information or money over the phone.

Copyright 2019 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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