With technology, we make use of it fully when it comes to connecting with our loved ones. Either via a phone call or comments under a social media post, the world is now a global village where connecting with people from anywhere on the planet is possible.
But technology’s reach has its cons too. Nowadays scammers and fraudsters lose no opportunity of attacking your online privacy and space and stealing your data from the internet. These criminals are not only highly skilled with social media but also use cell phone numbers to perpetuate their crimes.
According to the Federal Trade Commission, a successful phone hoax resulted in a $1,170 loss on average in 2020. Furthermore, technological advancements have made this illegal job simple.
In many cases, callers suggest misleading commitments, such as opportunities to purchase things, make investments with your money, or receive free product trials. They may also provide you with financial assistance in the form of grants and lotteries. Some scammers will phone and threaten you with jail time or lawsuits if you don’t pay them right away.
It’s possible that the weird messages you are receiving are automated calls or pre-recorded voicemails. Some pretend to be familiar with the receiver’s daily routine and may even provide what appears to be identifying information about the recipient. Typically, they seek to defraud or harass the person who receives the message. These callers may attempt to intimidate, threaten, or blackmail the person who answers the call.
Auto dialers allow dishonest operatives to make millions of automated calls for as little as a few dollars per day. Malicious tools, which are readily available, can deceive your caller ID into displaying a legitimate government or corporate number, or one that seems to be local, in order to improve the likelihood that you will answer.
Listed here are six tips for dealing with a text or call from an anonymous person in the best way possible:
Immediately look for that number on social media: Social networking sites are nowadays very efficient when it comes to finding a person, whether it’s an old relative or a friend, or even a stranger. Facebook and LinkedIn are examples of such platforms that allow us to put a number in the search bar and get information about that person who called you. This way, you will get to know if it was an important call or just another scammer who is waiting for you to get virtually vulnerable.
Consider using call-blocking tools: Many phone network operators and third-party analytics businesses are upgrading their call blocking and labeling services, and they are using new information to help detect robocalls, according to a second annual Federal Communications Commission report released in June 2021. Every year, millions of unsolicited calls to American customers are intercepted and stopped.
The call-blocking tools will assist you in screening your calls and also help in identifying the shady numbers that are frequently calling you. Also, consider contacting your service provider and see if they can provide you with a similar service that is effective enough.
Apple iPhones offer an opt-in call-screening and blocking feature called “Silence Unknown Callers,” which allows users to block and silence unknown callers.
Google Pixel phones include a call-screening and blocking function known as “Call Screen”. Google also provides many free, opt-in call-blocking utility apps for Android phones. Google Voice users can also employ a call management tool to stop inappropriate calls.
Check the identity of the caller: One of the best ways to keep yourself safe and secure from any online danger is by checking the caller’s identity first.
If the number is unknown, you can use Nuwber to research who is trying to contact you. Simply put the number in the search bar and hit enter. Go through the information provided on that person and check whether it’s someone you know, or at least someone from your area.
Record the calls: If you are not too hesitant in picking up the calls from unknown people, consider recording them. Talk to them and ask them who they are and why they called you. Also, never give them your personal information such as your email address or your credit card number, even if they tell you that they are from a genuine firm like your bank or your office.
In case you get to listen to creepy comments and even lewd talk, a call recorder will help you collect evidence. Hang up on the molester/ scammer and right away report their number to your service care provider and also to the police, if possible.
Block the number: After you have done your research on the unknown number and now that you know it is probably a scam, you can block that number right away. Call your service provider and ask them to block this particular number for you. If you are unable to block a phone number through your network operator, an outside firm can probably help you with reporting the scammer.
Report the number: The Federal Trade Commission can assist you in preventing unsolicited calls and text messages from reaching you. Try reporting the messages and any future efforts to contact to the authorities.
You can also contact the police for assistance in case you are being harassed or threatened. They are accustomed to receiving such reports and will not be startled to receive one from you. Early notification is recommended so that you can obtain a police report, and they will be likely to address the occurrence on file if things become more serious.
Conclusion: We all get annoyed when we get unknown and unwanted calls or messages. In order to protect ourselves, we need to take precautionary measures. This list includes six ways to protect yourself from unsolicited scam calls and creepy messages.