Technological advances have allowed us to stay in touch with just about anybody through mobile devices, laptops, or computers. Thanks to Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) services, you can now make phone calls over the internet. However, along with the convenience comes the uncertainty and risk of receiving calls from scammers. So, you may be wondering, “can scam phone calls come from VoIP phone numbers?” Yes, they can, and if you want to learn how that happens, the types of scams that occur with a VoIP phone number, and how to avoid these scams, keep scrolling!
How Scam Calls Can Come From VoIP Phone Numbers
While VoIP services let you save money, you may get scam calls from these phone numbers. The VoIP technology allows you to pick the number and name that you want to appear on the caller ID when you register your account. With other spoofing services, you can pay for a specific PIN code, letting you choose the number and the location you want to be displayed on other people’s caller ID.
With the ability to change caller ID information, scammers can easily hide their identities. Given that the call appears to come from a local number or known organization, you will most likely answer the call. With the accessibility of VoIP hardware, including IP phones and routers, scam artists can easily connect these tools to their computers to record conversations and steal your personal and financial information.
Types of Scams That Happen With a VoIP Number
Now that you know the answer to the question “can scam phone calls come from VoIP phone numbers,” familiarize yourself with the following types of scams that you may encounter:
Fake IRS Calls
Scare tactics are common among scammers. They will pretend they’re from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and urge you to pay immediately. Otherwise, you will receive penalties, face lawsuits, or get arrested. Note that the IRS will not give you these types of threats or even call you. The IRS imposters will also ask for payments through gift cards, which is not what a legitimate federal official would do.
Tech Support Scams
One common scam call involves pretending to be someone from the Microsoft team. Scammers will say your computer got infected, so they will restore it for you through remote access. If you give in to their request, it will be easy for them to place malware in your system or steal your financial information.
Other scammers use VoIP phone numbers to convince you to participate in their surveys in exchange for some gift cards and other attractive prizes. All you need to do is rate a specific store. However, they will end up offering strange products and services. Others will ask whether you’re satisfied with your current bank and then ask for your credit card information later on as part of the process to provide you with an incentive.
While you are willing to help those in need, scammers will take advantage of your pure heart to get easy money. They will introduce themselves as part of a charitable organization. Then, they will convince you to donate immediately. If they are too pushy or guilt-trip you, they are probably a scammer.
Another scam call coming from VoIP phone numbers targets the elderly. Pretending to be their grandchild, scammers will say they got involved in an accident and would need money to get out of jail. Seniors may tend to panic and send the money that the scam artists have been waiting for.
How To Avoid Scam Calls
To keep yourself away from scam callers, take note of the following:
- Never share your personal data, like your address, Social Security numbers, and credit card information, especially over the phone.
- Do not answer questions, particularly close-ended ones. Scammers may record the conversation and make it appear that you’ve given your consent to subscribe to a specific service.
- Do not entertain calls from unknown phone numbers.
- Ask your phone provider regarding call blocking apps and services that you can use to stop unwanted calls.
- Have your phone number registered to the Do Not Call List so you can block telemarketing calls.
- If you receive calls from people claiming they’re federal agents or bank personnel, hang up and call the organization instead. Remember that they will not randomly call you for payment.
- If you think you received spam calls or robocalls, send your complaint to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Doing so will help prevent scammers from getting more victims.
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