Four types of phone scams you need to be aware of

Whether you’ve been the victim of a phone scam before or have been reading about them in the news, a great way to outsmart fraudsters is by being aware of their tactics.

These days, there are so many different ways for scammers to target members of the general public that it can be hard to keep up.

Luckily, this blog contains some of the most common scams out there, helping you to be more aware of the dangers that are out there. Everyone deserves to feel safe when answering the phone, or receiving a text, so make sure you don’t let the criminals off easy.

1) Wangiri scam

If you’ve recently received a call from 01295981692 then you might have been targeted by a Wangiri scam. Also called a Silent Call scam, this type of phone call will only ring you a couple of times or maybe even once. This means that most people will miss the call and attempt to ring back, but this will end up costing them a lot of money as these numbers usually have a premium rate.

If the phone number looks unusual or begins with a plus sign, that’s often a good indication that it was an international call. However, fraudsters are good at disguising their numbers so you should avoid calling unknown numbers back where possible.

2) Robocalls

While legitimate businesses are increasingly using automated voices for customer service purposes, fraudsters are also using them to target innocent people. Robocalls are cheap for criminals to orchestrate, making them one of the more common types of scams.

If you answer a call from an unknown number and an automated message starts, hang up the phone. Companies will rarely use automated voices to make calls, you’re more likely to come across them when you’ve called a company and they’re trying to direct your call to the right place.

3) Bank account compromised

With the rise of online banking, criminals are frequently posing as bank representatives over the phone. They might tell you there’s a problem with your bank account and that your money is at risk. In these instances, it’s important to never transfer your money into another bank account or to give out your passwords. Instead, hang up the phone and contact your bank using their website. They’ll be able to confirm that the call was a scam and investigate the issue.

4) Tax fines

Around tax time, fraudsters try to trick people into paying fines for the late submission of taxes. The fine is sometimes only a small amount, which means lots of people don’t think twice about paying it. But criminals will be able to steal your details once you’ve made the payment, meaning they can access the rest of your money in your account.

Other times, the fines could be much bigger and the scammers will threaten you with imprisonment if you fail to pay. Don’t feel pressured and instead end the call and contact the tax office to tell them what happened.