Fell into a Trap! Take Warning.

Last Update: Oct 8, 2019

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This morning I fell into a trap when I answered a phone call I received. VERY fortunately, as I later realized, I did not give the caller what she was looking for. Doing a little homework revealed something very nasty and I'm going to share it here for anybody like myself, who has not heard of a phonescam like this one! It apparently has been around for a couple years

I have reported this to the police through their provided service type, "Anonymous Crime Tip to the Police."

I have included the report here, not just for something of interest, but as a warning. I have left out demographics and salutation...

Updated:

There was a very lengthy police report here, word for word of a submission to an anonymous email crime-in-progress report.. Upon coming back here a few hours after including the report here, decided that such detail was unnecessary. But then I found some private messages that this is very old news, which I knew by the news report dates. Also I am finding that this, though quite a revelation to me, it apparently is common knowledge and therefore a little intrepid on my part to have included it as I have, if at all.

The most common factor about this is not answering a call with a number you don't recognize. I think it is all well and good to leave the links to the news reports only as they completely describe what I have experienced. My personal account of this scam is not needed.

I do apologize for minute details of such report and took a few moments to write this. It replaces the report. This still serves as the warning I intended it to be.

I do admit. I have been and still am behind the times on some things. It took a long time to become re-acclimated to society from spending an almost entire decade living in the forest with what equates approximately to 1930s technology in those days of short wave radio sets and automobile batteries.. In reponse to the one rather terse PM, my values to this day, are rather ancient to today's standards. I have never been as outward as most folks are but this is what makes me unique in my own ways.

Cyber technology has brought me up to date on many things though somewhat limited.

https://abcnews.go.com/Business/fcc-warns-consumers-phone-sc...

This is absolutely crazy! One must be on their guard at all times because you never know whey you will get hit! The news reports included here causes anger for such invasion and the fact that I have been tricked! Such clever practices, it goes to show that, if you do not know the caller and other pertinant things about it, DO NOT ANSWER THE CALL!

Pretty Darned Clever!


  • The Hang-ups. First time - emotionalism can get you calling back. It's exactly what they want! Second time - It's usually because they got what they want - the YES answer!
  • The Static Reception No doubt part of the act! It sets the stage for that answer!
  • The Call-Back. They need your voice giving the answer! They also need you to call so it looks like you're the inquirer, not them!
  • Editing the Call Likely they will edit the recording leaving your YES answer intact but most likely surround that YES with words of an offer of some sort. This is conjecture but it makes sense. Now they have "proof" that you purchased phone services!
  • Make the charges and how they do this, I don't know. Somehow they are successful with this because it's been going on for at least two years now!

It is very fortunate I am known to do things backwards sometimes and this time it was to my advantage! I answered No to the woman's question and not yes. The woman's apparent rudeness for hanging up on me may have her in serious trouble with the authorities because when I dug into this, I found the plot!

I am looking after you but you should also BE CAREFUL out there! I have been scammed (or attempted in some of them,) five times this year! All that were successful I have fortunately, outside of the hassles involved, fully recovered and have not seen any damage monetarily though inconvenienced for a time.

Hope this helps!

Daniel

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Recent Comments

23

Good to know Daniel, I guess these scammers are out to get people however they can...I usually never answer my phone until I see who's calling first on the caller ID or hear someone on the answering machine talking, lol. If I don't recognize it, I won't bother answering.

Lol, as I was writing this I had two calls, neither of which I answered, but one was obviously an automated call, which I could hear as they left a message to press this button and blah, blah, blah...I didn't bother to listen, but it was to resubscribe to our vehicle warranty service that is expiring...well, that sure is something since I didn't know we even had one...lol, haven't had a vehicle with a warranty in years, so of course this is a scam!

We've also had messages left about our social security number being "suspended" whatever that means, lol. I have no idea where these people are getting our number, but if I don't know who's calling by the number, they better start talking, and if I don't recognize their voice, or have any idea why they're calling, then I guess they're out of luck.

It's ridiculous how many calls like this we get, so I've been ignoring the phone for quite a few years already...plus, back when I was midnight shift, I'd hear these all day trying to sleep.

I figure if it's that important they'll leave a message or voicemail anyways and people that know me already know that I don't answer the phone right away, so they start talking, lol.

Glad to hear you didn't get scammed and answered No instead!

Best wishes :) ~Sherry

People from many of the Asian countries (and others) get their kicks and laugh all the way to the bank because it is so easy to fool many Americans, especially the elderly Some of these scams are of course, coming from our homeland as well, especially the telephone scams.

I've been scammed twice at the beginning of the year, both about four weeks or so apart. One store didn't have a card reader except behind the counter in a 7-Eleven in Winter Garden, FL and again in an unknown place. Both times my checking account got suspended by my bank's Fraud Prevention. There were $99,00 purchases being made with my card in Miami, one at a Wawa, no more than 45 minutes after having been in the 7-Eleven. The bank knew I couldn't possibly make purchases from locations that far apart, even if I took a flight.

I am very careful where I go and which stores I go in.

You can readily purchase card-readers as small as a school bag pencil sharpener from places like Amazon and eBay. In stores, NEVER let a cashier take your credit card behind the counter where you can't see it. That's all it takes, no less all the other ways theft can occur!

I was able to recover my money both times but it is inconvenient having to wait this out.

Thanks!

Daniel

Yes, unfortunately these scammers seem to prey on the elderly especially or they try to work on people's fears...such as the social security number being suspended or the IRS scam, saying you owe more taxes, etc.

Oh, another one I've gotten is "your computer license has expired" lol, which has to do with a scam going around about Windows. It's sickening, knowing even my 85-year-old dad gets these calls all the time as I've listened to them...good thing he's learned not to answer his phone until after checking the caller ID.

Wow, so sorry to hear you had to go through all that earlier this year...that must have been a near devastating ordeal to go through having your checking account suspended like that...but, it's a good thing they realized it must be someone else using your card numbers for all those purchases!

I really don't like using cards at all at stores, but it is sometimes a necessity. If I can, I prefer using cash, but carrying very much cash runs the risk of somehow losing it...some days I think I'd lose my head if it weren't attached, lol.

In my area, it's always a good idea to have some cash along since occasionally stores' computer systems go down or the power goes out here, which has happened quite a few times this past year while in the store shopping and I had to get gas too. The power was out pretty much everywhere and cards or checks won't work for anything then, but luckily I had enough cash with me so I was able to pay for my stuff and go.

Anyways, I've run on long enough, lol! Glad to hear you finally recovered your money after all that Daniel...thanks for sharing! Excellent advice for us all.

Best wishes :) ~Sherry

Funny you should say that about store computer systems going down. Yesterday I went to pig out at one of the local pizza places I go to frequently.

There I was, ready to eat and the cashier asked if this would be cash or debit. I told her both. I was aiming to get rid of the pocket full of coins I had and then get the rest with the card.

Nope! The server that handles payment processing was down. They lost a LOT of business yesterday!

Disgruntled and short on time (why I went out to eat instead of cooking) had to go to a grocery store, purchase something and take out cash. That alone took nearly an hour!

By the time I got back there, their system came back up!

In the long run, it would have been more time-effective to have cooked my meal!

And... the more you hurry, the more you get in your own way and lose time that way as well. Yesterday was one of those days!

Oh no...how frustrating to have that happen. I guess we never know though when technology will fail us. But, I agree...some days it seems the more you try to hurry, the slower everything goes...that is so true indeed! Guess the old saying one of my teachers used to say, "haste makes waste" can be very true.

Thanks for the warning, Daniel. Like you, I do not answer a call if I do not recognize the number. But if I slip up and do answer, if they say "Is this Carol", or just my name, I either say "who wants to know" or "may I tell her who's calling" or something noncommital like that. I have been surprised a few times with people I do know wondering why I responded like that, but I always tell them about the "yes" scam.

I din know about the "YES" scam, I usually do not answer Unknown calls but at times when I do, if they call out my name, I affirm in "yes, and who is this?", will be careful from now on.

Yes, that's a good idea. I usually ask who wants to know or who's calling, something like that. And if it's a number that I don't recognize, most of the time I don't even answer the phone. If it's important, they'll leave a voice mail.

I wasn't aware of it either. It shocked me when I found the news reports.

I remember when computers didn't have hard drives, just floppies and libraries didn't permit folks bringing in their own disks because of viruses and trojans. This stuff isn't new, having been going on in the days of the BBSs. It's really bad now to such a point that we now must build fortifications!

I have NoMoRoBo with my phone service. This service intercepts and redirects spam calls to their system. I didn't realize by default it's off. When I inquired about it, the phone company, they said it was off. Turned on, it put a stop to all of the spam calls I was getting!

Even with this protection, it pays to simply not answer them. Carol has a good point - "If it's important, they will leave a voice mail."

A call's importance followed-up by a voicemail. That's a pretty darned good consideration! Thanks!

You're welcome. Happy to help.

NoMoRoBo sounds like a good idea. I'll have to check into that. Thanks, Daniel.

NoMoRoBo comes with my 1-Voip service account. What I greatly enjoy about this particicular phone service is three-fold:

1. No stupid automated voice response (AVR) to deal with reaching Customer Service! (The ever-popular robot-assisted menu system.)
2. Customer service is US-based and not farmed out to places like India and the Philippines. (Calling experience ls like that three decades ago - you get a human, not a robot, immediately!)
3. Offers the NoMoRoBo service. The service itself is below competitive prices! You get average phone service with minimal bells and whistles but does offer the common amenities you would expect from a phone service.

1-Voip is not the only phone service that offers NoMoRoBo.

Here's the web address to NoMoRoBo. Somewhere in there, it lists which phone services come with it. Otherwise there is a subscription cost, which isn't very much. It is WELL WORTH IT!

I didn't know it was off when I got 1-Voip but when turned on, all the spam trouble got stopped in its tracks including the human spam calls!

https://www.nomorobo.com/

I am happy with this phone service and NoMoRoBo.

Thanks a lot Daniel. I didn't know anything about either program. Sure sounds like you could be a salesman for them! What a great testimonial.

What I miss about life a few years ago? Alright several years ago. Answering the phone that I bought and paid for! Now with screening necessary, often phone calls are not cheery little breaks in the day. Rude, pushy salespeople who intrude with useless and dangerous messages make phones take on a whole new role.

That was a more innocent time-
Best wishes,
Sami

I don't like having to do screening either. If you don't do it, you could wind up getting robbed. It is getting very dangerous to answer the telephone without paying attention to the caller ID screen!

I have telephone service that includes NoMoRoBo blocking service. This works great with the robo calls, but not with human calls! This is the type I got yesterday and you have to be careful with any calls these days, even some that spoof your trusted callers! Using the right programs, people can find out more about you than you know yourself!

What's even worse is I am getting more of these local unknown calls. I am not answering them. What has happened here is my name and phone number is now on lists that are being sold amongst these snakes! I've had two of them today - one of them woke me from a nap!

The other thing I hate about using the telephone today is having to deal with voice response systems - those things you usually have to interact with by talking to a robot rather than a human in a menu-based fashion. The new task these days is...

0-0-0-0-0-0-0 until you get through these stupid things until you overcome the system and you finally go to a human! Sometimes, and more often these days, you keep dialing 0, you may get no human but "Good-bye." instead!

Can there be joy when using the telephone? YES! Sometimes you get good old-fashion two-hour conversations with an old friend - and often with what comes with our day and time - no separate long distance charges!

Because I get angry when someone tries to scam me, and I don't like being angry, I stopped answering my home phone a long time ago. It goes straight to messages. If it's a genuine phone call they'll leave a message or ring my mobile (if they know the number).

Hey Marion :)

I get my messages via email with the sound files attached. I don't, nor have I ever owned a smart phone device. The latest technology I have ever reached with that was a flip type phone I had for a few years. Before that, it was my common use of ugh...remember these?...

***Pagers.***

That was done when it suddenly went silent. It wasn't the unit. Carrier frequencies were ceased as cell-phones took place and the pager became an artifact.

LOL! I completely bypassed that era when portable phones used to look more like walkie-talkies.

Other than this, it has been a house phone or landline. I have one of those Vtech phones and it's rather round-about to get to voice messaging on those.

The other thing that makes me a little more vulnerable is that I am part of a church family that numbers about 650 people. It is not uncommon to get phone calls with numbers that I don't recognize and I'm more apt to answer the phone if the phone number is local. In the case of the scam - that was within my area code.

You probably were one of the last to read the police report I had up there. I took it down because it was too cumbersome but left the news broadcasts. Yes, when I realized what was happening in front of me, it angered me and I felt the invasion, in fact, infiltrated which made me infuriated.

LOL! They didn't get what they wanted, which was that one-word answer - a Yes. Instead, they got "NO!" No matter how much one goes about taking my short answer and getting a yes out of it through editing the sound, it can't be made a yes! LOL!

It's nationwide and being around for nearly four years, two years before the news media took notice, it must still be working and that there are still folks out there who don't know about this scam.

Thanks!

Thank you for letting us know of this scam, anyone who reads this and gets a phone call like this now will know to just hang up!

Thanks for replying. I'm going to shorten that up. All the details need not be there. I've gotten a couple PMs telling me this is pretty common knowledge. It got by me somehow and I suspect there are others who might get taken by it. I realize it's been around since 2016 though I didn't know it until today. The "report" is going to be a quick story to make reading easier for folks. It's normal for me to write something, put it up, and then edit it down!

Thanks for the info. I usually do not answer calls I do not know who.

I usually don't either. Because I was expecting a call from a friend at work, I thought it was him calling. I got that call about a half hour later. Oops. Well, in that scam, I gave a No answer instead! All's good.

Great to hear Daniel. We should take care. Thanks for the info, indeed.

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