Scammers – and scammy companies – are using illegal robocalls to profit from Coronavirus-related fears. Listen to some of the latest scammy robocall pitches, so you can be on the lookout and know how to respond. (Here’s a hint: hang up!)
Illegal robocalls are universally hated, so why do scammers still use them? Because they need only a few people to take the bait for them to make money. They might do that by getting your bank account number, tricking you into handing over gift card PIN codes, or stealing valuable personal information like your Social Security number.
Times of crisis bring out the best in people, and the worst in scammers – as you can hear in these sample calls from Coronavirus scammers pretending to be from the Social Security Administration, offering fake Coronavirus tests to Medicare recipients, and scaring small businesses into buying bogus online listing services.
To hear more examples of illegal robocalls exploiting concerns about the Coronavirus, and to stay up to date on the latest FTC information, visit ftc.gov/coronavirus. The FTC is taking the fight against illegal Coronavirus robocalls to companies that help scammy telemarketers. That includes companies that transmit or carry these kinds of calls for telemarketers, or that give the phone numbers that scammers use for people to call them back. Today, the FTC sent letters to nine VoIP providers and companies that license phone numbers, warning them about the penalties for helping telemarketers that use these kinds of illegal robocalls.
Now that you know what Coronavirus robocall scams sound like, make sure others do too – share, link, or like this post, and encourage them to subscribe to the FTC’s consumer alerts. And, if you get scam calls like these, don’t believe them. Instead:
- Hang up. Don’t press any numbers. The recording might say that pressing a number will let you speak to a live operator or remove you from their call list, but it might lead to more robocalls, instead.
- Consider using a call blocking app or device. You also can ask your phone provider if it has call-blocking tools. To learn more, go to ftc.gov/calls.
- Report the call. Report robocalls at ftc.gov/complaint. The more we hear from you, the more we can help fight scams.
The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.
- We won’t post off-topic comments, repeated identical comments, or comments that include sales pitches or promotions.
- We won’t post comments that include vulgar messages, personal attacks by name, or offensive terms that target specific people or groups.
- We won’t post threats, defamatory statements, or suggestions or encouragement of illegal activity.
- We won’t post comments that include personal information, like Social Security numbers, account numbers, home addresses, and email addresses. To file a detailed report about a scam, go to ReportFraud.ftc.gov.
We don't edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please ensure that your comment contains none of the above. The comments posted on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of other people, please do not include personal information. Opinions in comments that appear in this blog belong to the individuals who expressed them. They do not belong to or represent views of the Federal Trade Commission.
In reply to These Robocalls and scam by RJ0705504
In reply to I simply don't answer numbers by Skinnymini