With the emergence of advancements in the IT industry, a very new and shocking concept has emerged of scam phone calls and text messages. The concept of fraud is being very openly turned into a profitable business. The Communications and Information Technology has tried its best to openly create awareness of such schemes and advice people to reciprocate to any phone calls or text messages from unknown or unreliable sources. They pretend to be part of a bank, insurance company, any promotional agency or declare that the person has won a prize which they should claim. They also pretend to be part of leading multinationals and make the person feel honored of being contacted and should buy shares in the company through them.
Every year numerous people are victims of losing money to these schemes. This however is an art, the scammers know exactly what to say to the person they approach them, they become friendly and indulge in small talk to create a sense of trust. They offer schemes to double their investment or simply ask for donations saying they are from reputable associations. The CITC suggests that we should contact regulatory bodies associated with crimes and provide the contact details so that they can be traced so that this does not occur with their loved ones. Another regulatory body known as the Internal Revenue Service published a consumer alert to be aware of such scammers and provided tips as to how they can protect themselves.
Many times they ask for private details and trick callers to believe they are in for a refund or have won a special prize. These con artists usually do a little background check before contacting so that they know your weak areas and target those and make you emotional while making a judgment as when a person is emotional, their judgment is clouded. The IRS being associated with tax which revolves around an individual’s income becomes a very sensitive area and is one of the most exploited areas of such scammers. IRS has identified five ways in which one can differentiate a scam from an actual IRS call. IRS will never call to ask for payment nor will they contact to discuss taxes without mailing the person beforehand.
They do not ask for the due taxes without allowing the person to question or appeal to the stated amount. They encourage the use of a specific payment method, they never ask for payment details such as debit card or credit card numbers over the phone and lastly they will never threaten the citizen to involve third parties like the local police.
Being a little attentive during a phone call can help save tons of money and the breach of trust. Even if they do not financially get hurt but their trust in broken and they will doubt all future calls even if they are reliable and true. Scammers over this time have become so skilled that they do not invest time in people who they think will not succumb into their fraud.
Source: Arab News
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