Common Phone Scams and Fraud That You Should Be Aware Of

Some of these unsolicited calls aren't just annoying but also are malicious. There has been an increase of phone calls making the rounds lately where scammers try to trick victims into giving them sensitive data that could lead to massive financial losses.

That is why we are listing here the most common phone scams reported from this site. We will update this list from time to time.

1. IRS Phone Scam

This one is the most reported type of phone scam in our site. It could be a real person, usually with a foreign accent or an automated caller. In this scam the caller claims to be a representative of the IRS and demand immediate payments for tax owed. They will threat you with an arrest warrant, fraud charges and even blacklisting your taxpayer's SSN if you did not return the call on the spoofed number that is on your caller id.

What To Do If You Got A Call From Someone Claiming to be from the IRS

It may be tempting to call back the number they tell you to return a call from, please don't. Never ever return a call from someone claiming to be from the IRS. Hang up immediately, don't give them the chance to steal valuable information from you.

The best way to avoid being duped by these scammers is to know what the IRS would not do. The list is as follows.

  1. The IRS will never threat you with cold calling.
  2. Demand immediate payment and threat you with arrest.
  3. And most importantly, the IRS will never call you to get in touch with a taxpayer. They will send you snail mail instead.

Where To Report IRS Poser

Report it to the Federal Trade Commission or email [email protected] with a subject "IRS Phone Scam".


2. Microsoft Tech Support Fraud

This scam isn't new, in fact it's a well known fraud and most people wont take the bait either way. However, Microsoft reported that there are around 153,000 people who reported being the victim of such scam. With the most tragic incident involving one Dutch user who admittedly lost over $100,000 from the scam.

This scam start with an unsolicited phone call supposedly from someone claiming to be a Microsoft technician offering to give you a free security scan. They goal is to talk you into installing a remote software for them to take over your machine and do the scan. Once done, the software will either allow them to introduced viruses unto your computer or steal valuable data. Once the so-called "virus" is discovered, of course, the scammers will demand money for their services of "removing" it. Microsft tech posers are generally reported with a heavy foreign accent.

So what can you do about it?

Simple, hang up the call. Remember that legit tech support don't do unsolicited call. Also, try to avoid clicking the link that they will give you.


3. Grandparents Scam

This scam is just saddening, to think that there are people out there who ought to exploit grandparents love and concern for their grandchildren.

How This Scam Work

The scam starts with a unexpected phone call to an elderly person from someone who claims to be their grandchild. This caller explains in a frantic-sounding voice, that he or she is in trouble like he or she has been arrested, robbed or stuck in a foreign country. To make the impersonation more convincing, he or she will throw in a few family particulars, gleaned from the actual grandchild’s social media activity.

The scammers often call in the middle of the night to take advantage of the fact that the victim may not be alert enough to ask more questions, and that the victim may not want to disturb other family members by calling them to confirm the information

What To Do

  1. Don't give away information like names. Scammers fish for facts they can use to make the impersonation believable.
  2. Don't rush making decisions. Scam artists want to get you upset to distract you from spotting the ruse.
  3. Don't send cash, wire money, or provide numbers from gift or cash-reload cards . Scammers prefer those payment methods because they’re difficult to trace.