There are three phrases that should immediately ring alarm bells when you receive an unsolicited call.
If someone calls your iPhone or Android device and says something about it, it might be time to hang up.
There are countless types of phone call scams – and any of them could appear out of the blue.
The Sun asked a leading cyber expert about the most common issues everyday phone users should be aware of.
We have with Dr. Klaus Schenk, senior vice president of security and threat research at Verimatrix, who uncovered the “red flags” that you’re dealing with a scammer.
The first clue is that a call has come as a surprise – and you don’t know the number.
“There are several warning signs or red flags that can indicate that a phone call is a scam,” said Dr. Klaus to The Sun.
“If you get an unexpected call or the number is unknown, you should be careful.
“In emergency situations, scammers may pretend to be helpful, for example by posing as an airline representative, when their real intention is to steal identities and money.”
“Performing a quick internet search to verify the legitimacy of the caller is always a prudent move.”
Fraudulent phrases revealed
There are three common phrases scammers use to try and fool you.
First comes a scammer asking for “immediate payment”.
“Be careful if the caller demands immediate payment or asks you to provide personal information,” warned Dr. Klaus.
The second phrase to look out for is a “free gift” or a chance to invest in something.
“Promises of lucrative financial opportunities or gifts, as well as emotional manipulation tactics should also raise suspicions,” revealed Dr. Klaus.
And thirdly, be very careful when someone on the phone asks you to “install an app”.
“Even if the caller insists on installing certain apps or requests comprehensive personal data, caution is advised,” says Dr. Klaus.
If you’re suspicious of a call, it’s best to just hang up.
The best solution is to contact the company you claim to be speaking to directly.
Use contact details from the official website or app – and not ones given on the phone as they can be fraudulent.
This allows you to verify any claims made during the call with the legitimate organization.