The Say ‘Yes’ Scam
Recently I became aware of a phone scam that has been going on for a while. It is sometimes called the “Can you hear me now?” line from Verizon commercial fame. You receive a call and the caller asks you a question like, “Are you the lady (or man) of the house?” The purpose is to get you to say yes so that they can record your answer and use that as permission to well, take your money. The scam has various twists to it and you really need to protect yourself.
Here are a few examples of the questions they might ask with possible answers:
- Are you the lady of the house?
- Usually we would say yes but try asking them a few questions like: What company do you represent? Or Who is this?
- Are you the owner of the house? — Why? Maybe. Who wants to know?
- Do you have authorization to make decisions on this account? – Why do you want to know?
- Can you hear me now? — I can hear you fine.
The idea is to not use the word ‘yes’. Turn the question back on them and ask your own question. If it isn’t a company you know then just hang up. If it is a company you deal with you can always tell them you will call them and then call the number you have for contacting that company and verify that it was them calling. You can also check the phone number through the internet.
Once they have recorded your “yes” they will try to use it with your bank, credit cards or to steal your identity. Don’t be fooled if they have some of your information already. I frequently ask what company they represent and what they are selling then I tell them not interested and hang up. Be careful with all your phone and email dealings. Many scams are being used with the phones and now with our emails and Facebook. Blocking the phone numbers can help but they change the numbers they use frequently. Be prepared and don’t be afraid to just hang up.