Your phone rings and you instinctively reach out for it expecting a familiar caller ID on the screen. A few seconds later, you emit a muffled gasp because it’s your phone number calling you. You blink and look again – why is my phone number calling me?
Here is what it means:
Scammers are at work
The Better Business Bureau and other bodies recently issued a warning about scammers employing this tactic to get access to your personal information. Scammers are betting you’ll be more likely to receive the call with your own number, rather than a “Private Caller”, or “Unknown Number” beaming on the screen.
Hackers and cybercriminals are out to get you to receive their calls, so they can lure you to reveal sensitive information through falsehoods. If you receive the call, it could be a robocall trying to push the idea of reducing your credit card interest rates, or someone impersonating Microsoft officials with a solution to some common computer problems, such as a sluggish CPU.
Whatever comes from the other end of the call, you can be sure they need your credit card information. No one can possibly lower your credit card interest without your credit card details. Even when someone tries to sell you software, or an update, they’ll gravitate towards your sensitive financial data.
Technology makes it possible
How is it possible for someone to call you using your own phone number? Well, technology today can allow people with nefarious intentions to make their calls appear to be originating from whichever source they want.
You could receive a fake phone call from Microsoft, the IRS, or from any other reputable company or organization. The point is that scammers want to get your attention and they want you to receive that call. They can’t possibly extract any information from you unless you receive that call.
But hackers have stepped up their efforts to ensure they trap unsuspecting people by using their recipients’ own caller IDs. They know you may not likely receive strange calls from the IRS or Microsoft, but are hoping you’ll receive a call with your own number out of curiosity.
What you should do
Scammers are also betting on your ignorance. A phone call can’t lower your credit card interest rates, neither will it solve the nagging problem on your PC. And no one can possibly flush malware out of your phone. This also explains why they target older people, who may not be so technologically savvy as their younger counterparts.
Do this when your own phone number calls you:
- Just cancel the call: It’s the best way to avoid falling into the scammer’s trap. The scammer will likely call a few other times and give up.
- Remember caller IDs can lie: Technology can allow scammers to tamper with the source of their calls to hide their identities. You also need to be aware that incidents of cell phone cloning are on the rise.
- Protect your personal information: Be sure not to provide any of your personal information to known or unknown persons over the phone or on phony websites. If unsure, call the agency or business for confirmation.
- Remember the small print: Most reputable businesses and organizations state clearly they don’t ask for personal information over the phone or any other channel.
- Avoid shortcuts in life: If an unsolicited offer promises quick solutions to common problems, treat it as a red flag.
Why is my phone number calling me?
If your own phone number calls you, ask yourself this question before proceeding to the next course of action. Control your curiosity because that’s what scammers are targeting, and cancel the call. At PeopleFinders, we provide all the information you need to avoid falling victim to scammers. Contact us today for more information.