Better Business Bureau serving Eastern North Carolina is warning cell phone users about a new scam that can add unauthorized charges to their monthly wireless bills.
The scam has been dubbed the “one ring” scam because victims’ phones ring only once before the call is disconnected. If a victim tries to return the call,they are often charged a $19.95 international call fee plus $9 a minute for the duration of the call. Scam artists are counting on victims to be curious enough about a call from an unfamiliar number that they will call back right away.
“Locally, we have not had any complaints filed, but this scam is spreading rapidly and is quickly becoming a nationwide problem,” said Toby Barfield, president and CEO of BBB serving Eastern North Carolina.
The calls typically originate from outside the United States. Victims report that these calls are mainly coming from Caribbean nations including Grenada, Antigua,Jamaica and the British Virgin Islands. Area codes for these calls include 268,274, 473, 809 and 876.
BBB recommends that if you do not recognize an out-of-state telephone number on your caller ID, ignore it and do not call back. Also, you should check your cell phone bills carefully and inform your carrier if you spot any unauthorized charges. The earlier you document the fraud, the better your chances of having some or all of the charges removed.
For additional information, visit bbb.org.