Did you receive a phone call from former President Obama recently? If so, it is the most recent scam making the rounds. The call plays a recorded message from former President Obama or former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton asking for a donation. This is followed by another voice telling you to push a button to speak with an agent who asks you for your credit card information. Unfortunately, your money is not going toward a political cause. It goes into the scammers’ pockets instead.
It is best not to speak with the “donation agent” because doing so could give the scammers important information about you that they can use in later scams. Also, do not provide your credit card number or any other personal information because doing so could make you vulnerable to fraudulent charges and possibly identity theft.
Here are BBB tips on how to avoid political fundraising scams:
- Hang up. Don’t press any buttons. We all like to have the last word, but engaging with the caller may just give the con artist information he can use.
- Watch for spoofed calls. Your Caller ID may say that someone from Washington, DC is contacting you, but scammers can fake this using phone number spoofing technology.
- Never give out any financial information. If you did not initiate the call, do not provide bank account, credit card, or Social Security numbers over the phone.
- Research fundraising organizations before donating. Be especially cautious of links that come to you through email or social media. Don’t click through. Instead, go directly to an organization’s website by typing the URL in your browser or using a search engine.
You can learn more about robocall scams on the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) website. Also, check out the FTC article on political polling scams.
For more information on other scams, visit BBB Scam Tracker at bbb.org/scamtracker/evansville.