SMARTPHONE owners have been warned about Grandparent scams that could steal all of their money.
Scammers are preying on grandparents’ love for their grandchildren to steal their money, the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) warned in a blog post.
HOW DOES THIS SCAM WORK?
Threat actors know no boundaries when it comes to scamming people out of their money – this includes ripping off seniors and grandparents.
The tactic, dubbed a “grandparent scam,” comprises threat actors pretending to be a target’s grandchildren and then asking for financial assistance.
“Often the imposter claims to have been in an accident or arrested,” the FCC explained.
“The scammer may ask the grandparent ‘Please don’t let mom and dad know,’ and may hand the phone over to someone posing as a lawyer seeking immediate payment,” the agency continued.
Bad actors may even manipulate a victim’s caller ID to make the call appear like it’s from a trusted source – this is known as “spoofing.”
What’s more, thanks to new artificial intelligence (AI) technology, threat actors can now seamlessly replicate the voice of others.
Scammers can do this by obtaining just a short audio sample from a person’s social media.
HOW TO STAY SAFE
In order to help people stay safe against these nefarious money attacks, the FCC has shared some tips.
“Always use caution if you are being pressured for information or to send money quickly,” the agency writes.
“Scammers often try to bully victims into transferring money through a mobile payment app, by wiring money, or by purchasing gift cards or money orders,” it added.
Sometimes, scammers may also request to meet to receive money in person.
If you get a call like this, the FCC advises that you hang up and report it immediately to the police.
“To ease your mind, you can also call or text your family members directly to make sure they’re not in trouble,” the agency continued.
Moreover, if you find yourself the target of a potential scam, you can file a complaint with the FCC here.
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