How do phone scams work?

Date: 07.02.2017

The world that we live in stands on clever communication technologies. Nowadays it is hard to imagine the day goes by without a phone in our hands. No one can deny the fact that era of smartphones have brought us convenient ways to keep in touch with our relatives and friends, however it is also very tempting opportunity for frauds. How do phone scams work?

Prize offering

One of the ways that frauds use really willingly is cold calling and offering some sort of prize. This method is really effective, mostly because the victim is taken by surprise – you see an unknown number, it often calls at work, at the restaurant or in any kind of public place, so the awareness is on really low level.


Scammers tell their interlocutor that they have won something – it can be pretty much anything, from vacation trips to electronic devices. Supposedly all you have to do to claim your award is give them your personal information, so that they can send you the tickets or the prize. Of course, the chances of the award being real is about 5% – most of the time it is just a way to scam you.

How not to be deceived? It is quite simple – first of all, before giving out any personal information, try to recall if you have participated in any kind of contest or lottery. If you have not, then it is just common sense to assume this is an attempt of swindle.


Phishing callers

Phishing scammers use phone calls to persuade you that they are a reliable company that is trying to help you. For example, they introduce themselves as bank employees and say that there has been an attempt to hack into your account. Allegedly to help you, first they need to verify your ID, so you need to tell them your name, address, password and other sensitive data. Remember – it is very rare for any financial institution to call their customers and demand such information. To prevent this kind of scam you should check phone number or call this company by yourself.

One ring scam

Another tactics phone frauds use is so called one ring scam. Again, it is working, because we are not fully aware, cautious and often act without forethought. How exactly does it work? Scammers dial random phone numbers for one ring and then hung up. When you see that somebody tried to reach you, usually you unconsciously grab your phone, wonder who called you and instantly return the call. What happens next? There are many possibilities – you can get really high phone bill, if you get charged for calling abroad or get drawn into a conversation, during which frauds will try to phish you.