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“One-Ring” Continues. Additional Area Codes to Avoid

“One-Ring” Continues. Additional Area Codes to Avoid - The Beacon


By: Jason

“One-Ring” Continues. Additional Area Codes to Avoid

Your Better Business Bureau (BBB) continues to receive reports regarding the ongoing “one-ring” scheme. Numerous sources are now warning consumers not to return missed calls to numbers that they do not recognize.

Here is the scenario. Your cell phone rings one time (“one-ring”) and then hangs up and you are left with a missed call from a number you do not recognize. If you call the number back, you are kept on hold for as long as possible and when you receive your next phone bill, there is a charge for calling a foreign number. The charges can be very expensive because you called a country in the Caribbean and rates are very high. The people who called you in the first place receive part of these charges from your return call which is why they called in the first place and kept you on hold when you called back. The charges occur if you call the number back, not when they call you.

We previously reported several area codes to be wary of due to their association with the “one-ring” scheme. As this scheme persists additional area codes are now involved. The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued a scam alert dated 2/10/14 specifically about this topic and included the following area codes: 268, 284, 473, 664, 649, 767, 809, 829, 849 and 876.

Returning a call to any of these area codes could result in a hefty phone bill for you. You can report such calls to the FTC by calling 877-382-4357 or visiting

If you have incurred charges as a result of this scheme and need help resolving the issue with your phone provider, you may consider filing a complaint with the BBB. The BBB encourages you to first try to resolve the charges directly with your phone provider before filing a complaint. You can see which BBB office handles complaints for your phone provider by going to and searching for your phone provider.

For more information you can trust, visit

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Jason was the Manager of Dispute Resolution Services with the BBB and primary handled consumer complaints. He also assisted consumers with business inquiries. He was a regular contributor to the blog.