I have a fairly decent list of contacts that I have for either work or people that I know personally. In my phone, I label each one of them rather clearly. If I don’t know a number when it comes up on my phone, I always let it go to voicemail. If there’s a reason they are calling, there’s a reason for them to leave a voicemail.
The reason why is that there are so many intrusive calls that come through that are wasting your time on their best day and scamming you on their worst. Hell, I can’t count the number of times I have gotten voicemail telling me that I can lower my student loan debt. Funny thing is, I have never had a dime of student loan debt.
A new phone scam using international area codes has experts warning cell phone owners not to call back if they get a missed call from an unfamiliar area code, urging them to check the number against a list of area codes known for a costly scam. According to Inc.com, it’s known as the “one ring scam.” It’s a type of phone scam that resurfaces occasionally — and it’s come back with a vengeance.
Sometimes the perpetrators will just ring once and hang up. Other times, they will wait for people to answer and play “a recording of someone crying for help or the sounds of someone in need of medical attention or under attack.” Other times, they’ll send a text message to the same effect.While the numbers may look like they’re coming from a U.S. area code, they actually aren’t. Instead, they come from one of a number of Caribbean countries and territories which use the North American numbering plan. In other words, their numbers begin with +1 just like ours. However, their laws are different, and they allow for what look like regular numbers to exact exorbitant charges.
“The scammers hope you’ll call back, either because you believe a legitimate call was cut off, or you will be curious about who called,” the Federal Trade Commission warned back in 2014.
“If you do, chances are you’ll hear something like, ‘Hello. You’ve reached the operator, please hold.’ All the while, you’re getting slammed with some hefty charges — a per-minute charge on top of an international rate.”
According to the FTC, the most common area codes the scams originate from are 268, 284, 473, 664, 649, 767, 809, 829, 849 and 876.