Have you ever received a call where the first question from the caller is “Can you hear me?” Most of us have, but when a caller asks for you to say “Yes” it’s better to say “Goodbye.”
It’s part of a new scam by the telemarketing industry.
You may not even know that the caller is an automated system or robocall. It sounds casual enough and most of us have asked or been asked whether the call is clear, so you may not even be suspicious.
But according to police departments across the country, Consumerist reports the scammers may be recording your voice saying, “yes.”
That voice recording may later be used to sign you up for a service, a home alarm system or a cruise- something you never wanted. You voice recording may confirm you agreed to charges on a stolen credit card, when you didn’t.
In one lawsuit filed by the Federal Trade Commission, telemarketers told consumers they would provide them with identity theft protection services if they signed up for a new Medicare card, all they would need to do is provide their bank account numbers. In those cases the fraudulent recording was used to confirm the agreement.
Another scammer promised the victims would receive a prescription drug discount card. Those victims were allegedly coached on how to give a purportedly recorded authorization to withdraw from their bank accounts. The victims not only didn’t receive any discounts but they suffered additional harm from no-sufficient fund withdrawal fees.
The Federal Trade Commission oversees telemarketers and has examples of how telemarketers work to scam consumers.
You may want to screen your calls, but some scammers will obtain a local number so it looks like a local business is calling. Check out a robo calling services that blacklists phone numbers who have been reported as Do Not Call violators.
You may reply with “I can hear you” if you have any doubts. Best to just say “No” to any telemarketer whether live or recorded.