BeenVerified analyzed over a quarter million phone spam complaints across all 50 states in 2021. Our analysis found more than 17% of complaints were related to business imposter scams. Scammers impersonating employees of Amazon, Apple, CashApp and others have grown increasingly smarter and bolder, even going so far as to claim to be calling from fraud prevention departments.
/PRNewswire/ — NEW YORK, Nov. 24, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — — Have you received a suspicious text or phone call claiming that there was a problem with your online order, that your item was delayed, that there was suspicious activity on one of your accounts, or that you needed a refund from a retailer? You’re not the only one who feels this way. According to a recent report by BeenVerified, you could be one of the many Americans who have fallen victim or prey to the “business imposter fraud,” which is expected to be America’s top phone scam in 2021.
The goal of these scammers: After alerting consumers to “fraudulent activity” on their account, they attempt to gain remote access to a consumer’s phone or computer to purportedly help with a refund. Upon obtaining sensitive personal information, they raid bank accounts or make phony purchases—often in the form of untraceable gift cards—in the customer’s name. With the holiday shopping season upon us, BeenVerified anticipates more victims will be targeted by these imposter scams, as well as a host of other ongoing threats.
Think about what information they are asking for. A retailer would never need your Social Security number to verify your purchase. If the caller is asking for any personal information, hang up and report the incident to both the retailer and the FTC. According to a recent report from the Federal Trade Commission, consumers lost $1.6 billion to impersonation scams from January through September 2021, with a median individual loss of $1,000.
Verify who is contacting you. A quick Google search can give you the support number for any major company or retailer. If the number that has texted or called you doesn’t match, hang up and call the support line directly. With email, check the sender’s address. Is it coming directly from the company that’s allegedly contacting you? If not, mark it as spam and report the offender.
Check the links. Hover over or hold down a link to preview it without actually clicking or downloading anything. If it’s unfamiliar or suspicious, delete the email, block the call or flag the text.
BeenVerified’s mission is to help people discover, understand and use public data in their everyday lives. BeenVerified and our associated websites curate dozens of public data sources and proprietary data sets to give people easy and affordable access to billions of public records.