"One Ring" Phone Scam On The Rise

Photo Credit: Stuart Frisby
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From credit card fraud to phone scams. There's a new one to warn you about this morning. It's called the "one ring scam." And crooks don't even need your credit card information to steal your money. They're buying or stealing lists of US cell phone numbers and then using computers to mass dial. Your cell phone will ring quickly, maybe even one ring, just long enough to generate a missed call on your phone. The con artists hope you are curious enough to call the number back to see who it was, and if you do, the scammers charge your phone bill like a 900 number- 20 dollars for the call,, and another 9 dollars for every minute you spend on the line with them. The Better Business Bureau says this scam is more effective than others, because it raises no red flags.

"There is no one trying to sell you anything. There is no one sending the wrong type of message or who has a foreign accent or doesn't speak very well. All of those things that we look for are absent," said Aaron Reese, BBB Spokesman

Consumers who have been duped by these calls report they are coming from the Caribbean Islands-Jamaica, Antigua, the British Virgin Islands. The area codes may be 268, 809, 876, 284, and 473. If you think you might have been a victim of this scam, immediately call your cell phone carrier to document the fraud. The quicker you do that, the better chance you'll have of having some or all of the charges removed. The Better Business Bureau says the safest thing to do if your phone rings, and it's a number you don't recognize, don't answer it, and do not call it back. Pretty much everyone has voicemail, and if the caller has something really important to say, they will leave a message identifying themselves. If you don't know anyone in the islands, then likely it's a scam.