Several reports are warning cell phone users not to answer a call that appears to come from their own phone number.
KCBD in Lubbock, Texas, reported that a scam appears to call users from their own number and tell them that their account has been "flagged for security." The person on the other end of the line asks for the last four digits of the victim's Social Security number. According to the report, the scam targeting multiple wireless carriers. AT&T and Verizon were named by KCBD. The Fresno Bee and WFAA have reported on similar scams.
The "calls from your own number" scam was mentioned on the Federal Trade Commission's website in 2015.
“These calls from your own number are illegal. Don’t pick up — or press buttons to be taken off the call list or to talk to a live person. That just leads to more calls,” Bikram Bandy, of the FTC, wrote in a 2015 post.
According to the Federal Communications Commission, spoofing is typically used to manipulate the person on the other end of the line into giving away personal information that can be used for scams and other fraudulent activity.
Consumers should be wary of responding to requests for any personal information on any calls if they are suspicious. Personal information should never be given out and a password should be set to access voicemail on devices.
Those who suspect spoofing can file a complaint with the FCC.
Cox Media Group