One of the most annoying things about living in an always connected digital age is receiving calls from automated sales services. While most people consider this a simple nuisance, it can also lead to financial disaster thanks to a new complicated scam that involves automated calls.
The “Can You Hear Me” scam uses recordings of your own voices to trick businesses and individuals out of their hard-earned money. Learn more about how this scam works, and how you can protect yourself from becoming a victim.
What are Robocalls?
A robocall is an automated call that is programmed to dial your number and then leave a message. Historically, robocalls have been used for sales purposes, information calls or to let you know that you’ve missed a bill payment.
Unfortunately, robocall technology is now increasingly being used by hackers and other immoral individuals for the purpose of scamming. Through robocalls, hackers are recording people’s voices and using this to steal their personal information.
Impersonation of Real People
The most common way robocalls are used for scams is by impersonating a real person. When you pick up and answer one of these calls, the recording is designed to sound like a real person is on the other end of the line.
In an effort to make these scam calls even more convincing, the perpetrators are adding background noise, coughs or other ambient sounds to increase the illusion that you are speaking to a real person.
Can You Hear Me?
The most recent and pernicious scam involves someone asking “Can you hear me?” when a call is answered. Once you respond, your voice is recorded.
After the robocall ends, your voice is then used as part of a scam. The scammers will call you back and say that you agreed to pay a certain amount of money for a non-existent good or service. When you deny that you agreed, the recording of your voice is then played back to “prove” to you that you agreed to the service.
The point of this exercises is to convince you to give over personal financial information like bank account and credit card numbers that can then be used by the scammers.
What Should You Do?
If you want to avoid falling prey to the “Can You Hear Me” scam, remember to never give out your personal information over the phone.
If you do receive a call like this — simply hang up. Since it can be difficult to know whether a phone call is a scam, be sure to ask for clarification about who is calling before saying anything that could possibly be used against you.
Remember that these scammers are going out of their way to confuse and trick you. Always be on your guard, and note that being on a do-not-call list does not protect you from encountering these situations.
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