Many people pray on others to try and steal their money or identity. Telemarketer scams have been around for a long time, and they don’t seem to be going away any time soon. Therefore, if you would like to better protect yourself, check out these four examples of telemarketing scams.
1. Paying for a Prize
Many scams are built on a so-called free prize. The prize may be a free trial or a trip/timeshare. However, when you get down to the nitty-gritty, the prize isn’t free at all. With free trials, in many cases, the scammer signs you up for lots of other products that you must pay for each month. With travel scams and timeshare scams, you often have to pay upfront only to find out there is no trip or timeshare.
Imposter scams include a wide range of scenarios, but they all have one thing in common: the person calling you is an imposter. Older people may get calls from fake family members who need financial help. They rely on the fact that an older person may not know all their nieces, nephews, and grandchildren, but they will still want to help any struggling family members.
However, imposters can pose as anyone. Some pose as actual government representatives like an IRS agent. If they can fool you, they may be able to get your Social Security number and other personal information so they can steal your identity. In some cases, these scammers use technology to make it look like they are calling from a reputable company.
3. Debt Relief and Credit Repair Scams
Many Americans struggle with debt. Unfortunately, that has created a whole group of scammers who pretend they can help reduce your debt. Typically, you pay the debt relief company, and they work with the creditors to reduce how much you owe. However, in the end, you could end up losing the money you paid, while still owing the debt.
Unfortunately, in many cases, you end up destroying your credit even more. If the debt relief company tells you not to communicate with your creditors anymore, that’s a red flag. Other red flags include claiming this is a new government program and claiming they can eliminate all unsecured debt.
If you do need a credible debt relief program, they do exist, but most will only be able to reduce your debt by about 50 percent, and it will still hurt your credit, though the company will be honest about that.
4. Fake Charities
Fake charities are one of the most horrendous scams. Not only do they steal money from you, but they do it by pretending they are helping others. Luckily, there are a few glaring warning signs so you can easily spot a fake charity. First, a fake charity will pressure you into donating immediately instead of giving you time to consider an amount and/or wait until you have more money.
They may even send a fake thank-you for a donation you never sent. This makes you think you’ve already donated once, so you are more likely to assume the charity is real and forgo researching the charity.
Finally, a fake charity will request you pay via cash, gift card, or wire transfer. Unlike debit and credit, these forms of payment are harder to trace. This makes it easier for the scammer to get away after they’ve stolen your money.
Everyone makes mistakes, so falling for a scam isn’t the end of the world. Scammers work hard to make themselves look legit. If you’ve been scammed or are being harassed by a telemarketer, contact us at Heidarpour Law Firm today.