Have you ever gotten a phone call from a weird number? The mystery of who it could be makes it tempting to return the call, but police are urging people not to call back.
That’s because there is a new type of phone scam happening, and it can cost people thousands of dollars if they’re not careful.
It’s called the One-Ring scam. International phone numbers will call people and only let the phone ring once before hanging up. This plants the seed of curiosity which, if the scammer is successful, will cause the person to call the number back. That’s when the scam starts.
These international phone numbers are strategically chosen because the three-digit area codes look similar to domestic phone numbers. They are international, however, and the moment you call them back, you are connected to an expensive pay-per-minute or pay-per-call phone line. It’ll be you who gets charged for these pricey calls.
Even if you don’t get connected to one of these pay-per-call or pay-per-minute lines, you could still be charged for making an expensive international phone call.
Some of the bolder scammers might even answer the phone and try to convince you to sign up for some sort of expensive service. If someone is asking for any personal information, such as credit card information or your address, do not give it out. This is a red flag! You can almost guarantee you are being scammed if that happens.
The Federal Communications Commission has released the area codes that are most commonly involved in this One-Ring scam. The most common one is 268, which comes out of the Caribbean nations of Antigua and Barbuda. Other area codes include: 809, 876, 284, and 473. They come from the Dominican Republic, Jamaica, the British Virgin Islands, and Grenada respectively.
Be on the look out for suspicious calls!
Overall, the best way to avoid this One-Ring scam is to simply ignore the calls. They may call multiple times, or even leave a robotic voicemail, but remember, there is no need to call them back.
If you think you may have been scammed from something like this before, or if you have any questions about an unfamiliar number that’s been calling you, contact the FCC.
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[HT: Little Things]