How to Avoid Phone-y Scams
- Never send money to debt collectors who threaten you over the phone. Legitimate debt collections will first send an official letter to your home regarding any amount that you owe and a firm due date. TIP: Don’t send gift cards and never wire money to someone you don’t know!
- Government agencies such as the IRS will never call to demand money over the phone or threaten to call the police. •
- Never send money when you feel pressured. If you are receiving a call that a friend or family member needs cash immediately, directly verify the story with the friend or family member. TIP: Instead, obtain their information and let them know that you will call back. Get a second opinion from a family or friend. You can also contact the police department (626-308-2828).
- Never confirm any personal information over the phone, such as your credit card number, banking account information, or Social Security numbers. TIP: Do a quick Google search of the caller’s phone number or pitch to confirm any suspicions! It’s illegal for companies who hold contests to demand upfront payment in order to collect a prize AND to require payment to enter a sweepstake/contest!
- Law enforcement will never call you on the phone to notify you of an arrest warrant or demand money over the phone! Instead, hang up, look up the phone number of the police department that the caller claims to be from, and call for verification! TIP: Do not use a phone number that is provided by the caller.
- Register your phone number with the National Do Not Call Registry at www.donotcall.gov to stop telemarketing calls.