The 31 Forms of Identity Theft – Phone Scams

#9 Phone Scams

Phone scams are as big of a problem now as they ever were — and some of the most devious scams are growing in popularity. Number “spoofing” technology and robocalling have only made these scams more sophisticated and harder to detect.

While online scams are on the rise in our modern, high-tech world, plenty of fraudsters still rely on good, old-fashioned phone scams to con unsuspecting victims.

Phone scams have been around as long as landlines have existed. But due to the increased prevalence of smartphones, nearly everyone has their device on them at virtually all times — meaning there are that many more opportunities for callers to trick you with false claims, pleas for help, or even the promise of a free vacation.

Although many people assume that it is only the elderly who fall for such seemingly obvious ploys, these scams are growing more and more sophisticated, and just about anyone can fall victim to them. In fact, according to the Federal Trade Commission’s annual data summary of consumer complaints, 40% of Americans in their 20s reported fraud that caused them to lose money, while 18% of fraud victims aged 70 or older said that they’d lost money to a scam.

Below is a list of some of the most sophisticated phone scams the average person may fall for today.

  • IRS scams take advantage of people’s stress during tax season
  • The ‘grandparent scam’ preys on grandparents’ love for their grandchildren
  • Congratulations, you’ve won a free cruise! Or not
  • Fraudsters will even take advantage of natural disasters
  • Unsolicited ‘tech support’ personnel who ring you up to inform you of computer problems are likely not legitimate
  • Scammers dupe victims by claiming to be from a utility company or from the victim’s bank
  • Newer scams convince people that they owe a fine for neglecting to report for jury duty
  • SSA imposters tell you that your Social Security number has been suspended because of suspicious activity, or because it’s been involved in a crime. With such trickery, these scammers are good at convincing people to give up their Social Security numbers and other personal information
  • Scammers are selling products to treat or prevent COVID-19 without proof that those work

Credit monitoring will not alert you to this type of fraud.

LibertyID will take the following steps for/with their members:

  • If you become a victim of one of these phone scams, the steps that need to be taken will vary. LibertyID has a 100% restoration rate in bringing back true victims of identity theft back to pre-event status
  • Place fraud alerts at all three credit reporting agencies
  • File report with FTC
  • File a police report
  • Review credit reports with the victim to ensure there are no other types of fraud
  • Provide credit monitoring with alerts for 12 months
  • Periodically contact the member throughout the 12 months following resolution of their ID theft recovery case if warranted