As any resident who owns a phone can attest, phone scams are a serious problem across the United States. It does not seem to matter if people put their names on the do-not-call registry – these phone calls and text messages still manage to find their way through. This is largely because phone scams violate consumer protection laws in the first place, and they will not respect the rules meant to prevent unwanted contact.
Scammers are becoming increasingly sophisticated in their operations, as Fox News points out. When it comes to fake offers or fraudulent claims of owing the IRS, one would assume it is mostly senior citizens or inexperienced people who fall victim to these cons. However, a recent study from Truecaller revealed an unexpected demographic to be the ones most often tricked by phone spammers – millennials and men between the ages of 18 and 34. The nature of the most common scams may have something to do with this news. Fraudulent offers for favorable credit card rates, low-interest loans, political calls and claims regarding a problem with the consumer’s account top the list of current phone scams.
Phone scamming, especially the cons perpetrated by automatic “robocallers,” presents a significant problem to Americans. Consumers lost about $10.5 billion to phone scammers over a 12-month period, an increase from $8.9 billion in the previous 12 months. Also, persistent unwanted phone calls have risen 39% in the past year, with more than 97 billion unwanted scam calls during that time.
It can help consumers to understand the laws that protect them and realize when they may be able to take legal action.