A new year calls for a resolution (new year, new me, right?). One new year’s resolution we can all hope for is a decrease in scam calls. Scams are a nuisance everyone agrees needs to go. In our January Scam Call Trends Report, we cover the newest tactics scammers are using, and how you can avoid being swindled this year.
Most Common: Vehicle Warranty
Vehicle warranty continues to rank highest among the most common scam calls according to First Orion’s data. It remains the top one in the last few scam trends. Jokes about your car’s extended warranty are everywhere, and they’re getting old the more it happens over the phone.
Top 10 Scams
Other than the outstanding car warranty scams taking precedence, our data found insurance, retail, and government impersonators make it to the top 10.
Call Centers on the Rise
Call Center scams have skyrocketed this year. Surprisingly, this type of scam is offering its services to businesses, yet consumers are the targets.
Heard this call before?
“Hi, I’m Lisa calling you from Delaware BPO. How are you doing today? Glad to hear that at Delaware BPO. We handle your company’s incoming and outgoing customer calls at a very cheap rate. So if you are interested to hire us, please say yes…”
Call Center scams aren’t the only high hitters, lately. These scam calls have also been creeping up:
“Hello, this is Lisa with U.S. Tax assistance.org. If you owe the I.R.S. more than $7,000 in back taxes or have on file tax returns, we can help. Please press one for assistance. If you have received this call in error, please press seven. The I.R.S. is now accepting settlement offers at a fraction of what you may owe … Please press one for assistance. U.S. tax assistance.org is on your side to eliminate your I.R.S. back tax …”
“Hello there, how are you today? My name is Anna and I’m calling from the Healthcare Enrollment Center. And the reason I’m calling today is that there are millions of Americans who are qualified for health insurance assistance, and some even qualify for free insurance coverage. So, would you like to see if you qualify for one of these plans? Oh, I am so sorry. I just didn’t hear you that last time. I just wanted to know if you would like to see if you qualify for one of these insurance plans.”
“Hi there. This is Keith on a recorded line from Medicare Rewards. Can you hear me? Okay. I’m with Medicare rewards regarding your insurance warranty. My callback number is 866-951-2805.”
Social Security Scams
“This call is from the Department of Social Security Administration. The reason you are receiving this phone call is to inform you that we will be suspending your social security number because we found some suspicious activities on your social security. If you want more information about this case, press one. Thank you. Goodbye.”
Student Loan Scams
“Hello, this is an important statewide notification update from the division of economic impact assistance. The purpose of my call is to inform those individuals on our state list that have student loan debt about the new pathway program that is now available to you recently put into effect by the Biden administration. The new pathway program will allow you to significantly reduce or eliminate your student loan debt as it is now considered in a pause status during the special enrollment period. However, you must elect to enroll in the program”
New Scams, New Tactics
A newer type of scam is making its presence known. If you haven’t heard of Consumer Council, you’re most likely in the United States. This newer scam surfaced back in May, only to peak again last month.
Consumer Council is a relatively new term and is often used to sound more official to unsuspecting people. A call like this will be pitching healthcare, debt relief, insurance, and even job opportunities.
Similarly, Edu Metric/Matter (targeting job seekers and students), Google Business, and the Delaware BPO (classified with Call centers) scams are emerging, ready to sweep people off their feet (and not in a good way).
As 2022 progresses, we’ve taken notice of some growing scam call trends that could continue to rise in the coming months. Be on the lookout for calls about:
- IRS and taxes – debt relief
- Vacation – free offers of timeshares, hotels, and travel
- Retail – Amazon, Apple, and other digital shopping offers
- Solar Panels
First Orion, a leading solutions provider for mobile carriers and enterprises, tracks scam call data to help us transform the mobile communications experience. We also protect consumers with our free PrivacyStar app, available for Apple and Android devices.