If we’ve learned one thing about scammers, it’s that they love to play pretend. The latest facade? Callers saying they’re from a Chinese Consulate office.
The FTC and the real Chinese Consulates report that scammers seem to be reaching out to people with Chinese last names and saying they have to pick up a package at the Chinese Consulate office. In another version of the scam, they’ll ask you for information to avoid being in trouble with the Chinese Consulate, then asks for your bank or credit card information.
While these scammers are reportedly targeting consumers with Chinese last names, scammers often change tactics quickly. Regardless of who you are or who says they’re calling, never send money or give sensitive information to anyone you don’t know – especially if you didn’t originate the call. The readChinese Consulates, nor the Chinese Embassy, will ever call and ask you for money.
If you do get a call or message like this, hang up and tell the FTC. If you have business with the Chinese Consulate and are worried it could be a legitimate call, we still recommend hanging up – then contact the real Chinese Consulate by looking up your local office’s number. Whatever you do, don’t let a scammer bully you into giving up your money or information to them, especially if they contact you out of the blue.