“Can You Hear Me?” the person on the other end of the phone asks.
Your automatic response is “Yes”, which seems simple and harmless. Now with a new phone scam that is traveling around the country, your harmless answer might cost you hundreds of dollars.
The Can You Hear Me? scam is basically all about trying to get the victim to say the word “yes” on the phone. The positive response is recorded and used to approve charges on a stolen credit card, or on a phone, or on a utility bill and many other places. These crooks don’t need a payment method from you because they already have your phone number and phone providers blindly bill third-party charges on phone accounts.
If you think you’ve already been a victim of the Can You Hear Me scam, check all of your statements for unknown charges, If you find anything suspicious, call the billing department and challenge the charges. Be sure to ask for proof that you approved them. The Federal Trade Commission can help you dispute an unauthorized credit card charge. The Federal Communications Commission can help you with charges on your phone bill as they regulate phone bill “cramming.”
To protect yourself from becoming a victim, you can let calls from numbers you don’t recognize go to your answering machine or voice mail. You can also sign up for free phone blocking services such as Nomorobo. If you do answer a call from one of these Can You Hear Me scam scammers, do not answer with a “yes” response to any questions they ask. Instead either respond with “Who are you and why do you want to know?” or simply hang up on them
Hang up immediately, if they say they are from a government agency. Government agencies and the people that work in them do not call you on the phone EVER. These officials always communicate by mail only. Do not allow these con artists to make you a victim of the Can You Hear Me scam.