With the rise and increased use of technology, phone scams have become increasingly prevalent. Scammers are constantly finding new ways to trick people out of their money, personal information, and identities. In this article, we will discuss the worst phone scams of 2023 and how to avoid falling victim to them.
Social Security Scams
Social Security scams have become a common form of a phone scam in recent years. Scammers call and claim to be from the Social Security Administration, informing you that there is a problem with your Social Security number. They may threaten to suspend your benefits or take legal action if you do not provide them with your personal information, such as your Social Security number, bank account, or credit card details.
To avoid falling victim to this scam, remember that the Social Security Administration will never call you to ask for your personal information. If you receive a call claiming to be from the Social Security Administration, hang up immediately and call the official Social Security Administration phone number to verify the call’s legitimacy. One could also perform a reverse phone look up to identify the caller.
Robocalls are automated phone calls that play a recorded message when you answer. These calls are often used for scamming purposes, such as offering fake products or services or claiming to be from a government agency.
To avoid robocall scams, do not answer calls from unknown numbers, and do not provide personal information over the phone. You can also install a robocall-blocking app on your phone to prevent unwanted calls.
Tech Support Scams
Tech support scams, which impersonate companies like Microsoft or Apple, are a danger to your private information and device. They will call you claiming there is an issue with your computer that requires remote access in order to be fixed – but this is a ruse! Once they gain control of the machine, they can easily steal your personal data or install malicious software on it. Protect yourself by never allowing someone access unless you know who they really are.
To dodge tech support scams, keep in mind that authentic technical assistance firms will never contact you out of the blue. If a call comes through claiming to be from a technology service provider, don’t give access to your system and quickly end the call. Additionally, you can reach out to the official tech support company for confirmation if they really did dial your number.
IRS scams involve scammers calling and claiming to be from the Internal Revenue Service. They may inform you that you owe back taxes or have committed a tax fraud and threaten legal action if you do not provide them with personal information or payment.
To avoid falling victim to this scam, remember that the IRS will never call you to demand immediate payment or threaten legal action. If you receive a call claiming to be from the IRS, hang up immediately and contact the official IRS phone number to verify the call’s legitimacy.
Avoid falling for charity scams by refraining from donating to unfamiliar websites or giving out your information over the phone. Before making any donations, take time to research the charity organization and donate directly through its official website. To be certain you’re contributing to a reputable cause, make sure all of your donation details are provided on the secure site. That way, you can confidently help those in need while ensuring that your hard-earned money is going to good use.
Jury Duty Scams
Be wary of jury duty scams, which are perpetrated by scammers calling and posing as local courthouse or law enforcement representatives. They might try to tell you that you have missed jury duty and demand personal information or payment in order to avoid legal action. Keep this in mind: legitimate court personnel will never call demanding money or private info. If someone calls claiming they’re from a court office, don’t keep talking – hang up right away. Afterward, double-check the legitimacy of their claim with the appropriate agency for confirmation.
Grandparent scams are a prevalent form of deception in which the perpetrator attempts to fool seniors by calling and pretending to be their grandchild or another relative. They will likely exaggerate their situation, such as being arrested or dealing with an injury, then ask for urgent monetary aid. The elderly should stay alert and protect themselves from this type of scammer.
To protect yourself from this type of fraud, authenticate the caller’s identity by asking questions only your relative would know. Do not offer financial aid over the phone, and reach out to your family member or other dependable contacts to validate that the call is legitimate.
Phone scams are a common problem that can cause financial and emotional distress. By knowing the worst phone scams of 2023 and how to avoid them, you can protect yourself and your loved ones from falling victim to these scams. Remember to be cautious when receiving calls from unknown numbers and to never provide personal information or payment over the phone. If you suspect that you have been a victim of a phone scam, report the incident to the appropriate authorities immediately.