Utilize Reverse Phone Directories to Dodge Identity Theft Phone Scams
Although online identity theft scams get far more attention these days, phone based scams have interrupted even more lives over the past few decades. These calls start off innocently enough.
A person on the other end tells you that you’ve won a great prize or that you are pre qualified for a great new credit card and all they need is some basic information in order to send you your amazing gift through the mail right away. Of course, there is no prize or credit card, only a series of events leading to your identity being stolen by a phone scammer.
It Can Happen To Anyone
While concrete numbers are more difficult to come by, it is thought that thousands of people every year fall victim to these scams. It isn’t because they are foolish, it is simply a case where a telemarketer called at just the right time and used just the right offer to gain someone’s trust before having a chance to think things through clearly.
If you live in a household with multiple people, chances are that they’ll be just as vulnerable to aggressive telephone scams as well. Anyone with access to a credit card or bank account number is susceptible to deceptive persuasion by clever phone scammers that are out to assume your identity and wipe you clean.
Caller ID vs. Name Blocking
Up until recently, caller identification was the most powerful tool in the fight against phone scam artists. You could use the digital read out to see what number and name was calling and you could weed out phone scam calls by not answering calls from unrecognized numbers, but new technology has introduced caller ID name blocking which allows scammers to block their name when placing calls. All you are left with is a number with no way to tell who it is from.
Reverse Phone Lookups Help Screen Calls
An alternative to ignoring calls from unknown numbers is to use a reverse phone directory to identify the name registered under any phone number. These directories sift through large phone number databases to find information associated with any queried 10-digit number, similar to how any internet search engine filters through massive amounts of data to match relevant documents and web pages to keyword searches.
Rules of Phone Conduct to Live by:
If you happen to answer a call from an unknown number, remember the following rules to help protect your identity from unknown callers:
- Never give your social security number or personal information
- Keep your financial information to yourself
- If you cannot remember the person after they have identified themselves, ask them to stop calling and hang up