Scammers can fake caller ID info

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Your phone rings. You recognize the number, but when you pick up, it’s someone else. What’s the deal?

Scammers are using fake caller ID information to trick you into thinking they are someone local, someone you trust – like a government agency or police department, or a company you do business with – like your bank or cable provider. The practice is called caller ID spoofing, and scammers don’t care whose phone number they use. One scammer recently used the phone number of an FTC employee.

Don’t rely on caller ID to verify who’s calling. It can be nearly impossible to tell whether the caller ID information is real. Here are a few tips for handling these calls:

  • If you get a strange call from the government, hang up. If you want to check it out, visit the official (.gov) website for contact information. Government employees won’t call out of the blue to demand money or account information.
  • Don’t give out — or confirm — your personal or financial information to someone who calls.
  • Don’t wire money or send money using a reloadable card. In fact, never pay someone who calls out of the blue, even if the name or number on the caller ID looks legit.
  • Feeling pressured to act immediately? Hang up. That’s a sure sign of a scam.

Want more tips for avoiding scams? Check out 10 Ways to Avoid Fraud.

If you’ve received a call from a scammer, with or without fake caller ID information, report it to the FTC and the FCC.

Comments

Here is another scam number from Chicago 312-554-2425. I am tired of this and there should be away of stopping this kind of harassment.
Senior citizen

Here is another scam number for IRS saying you owe money.
305-422-9709

My sister & I have been getting them for years - each in our current (different) area codes. If you block a particular number or let it go to voicemail, they call back later with a different but similar number.
I recently called two of the numbers - one lady was overseas on vacation, one was stunned when she called after getting my vm and I answered "STOP CALLING ME"! (Of course I apologized profusely to both!)
Today I started answering them to make them put me on the DNC list - the robo msg says to push 9 to do that. Instead I got a person with a thick middle-eastern accent who put in a great deal of effort to convince me it wasn't a scam or sales call - obviously reading from a script. After I repeatedly said "Put me on your Do Not Call List", he put me on hold to get someone else. The call disconnected.
I created a single contact on my phone for every number with notes/date/time. Then I'll call the FTC to report this.

Phone numbers calling me I answer they state its a very important matter involving the IRS and I need to call them ASAP! Or its either I have a warrant out for my arrest due to unpaid something but I can take care of it now over the phone and it'll all go away! Phone numbers also calling and hanging up when I answer I call number back it says its been disconnected or no longer in service! Here's the numbers that call me: 914-241-5160 972-497-1400    1-701-380-4626   857-304-9018    580-307-6487 480-570-8421    And here in my area my cell phone area code is 434-xxx and i keep getting this number call hang up you call back but it says it's disconnected or no longer in service... 434-xxx-3816

can a caller get any personal info if they just call and dont say anything and then hang up?

Got a call from this number don't know who it was and don't answer.

Add this # 1-844-362-7958 automated call threatening arrest warrant if I don't contact them immediately for payment lol.

Recently we've gotten several spoof ID'ed calls all from our area code and 3-digit prefix, but with the last 4 digist different each time. The Caller ID will show something like a legitimate business (hospital, government office) but turns out to be a pre-recorded announcement about credit card monitoring. This is totally unrelated to what I would expect on a call from a hospital or other legitimate organization. How do I block these?

This FTC article about blocking unwanted calls may have some ideas for you.

Please add 646-397-2902 just got a call from New York the man said I would be sued and they were going to arrest me.

Received two different calls this week from legitimate caller ID name and numbers I recognized.However, when I answered they both were credit card services. I hung up immediately and am frustrated that now the scammers can spoof with a legit looking caller ID. One of the calls was from a local business so I called the number back just to find out if they were still using that number and they were. We use nomorobo for our Comcast landline and it works great for robo calls but this is a new tactic on the part of the scammers. Somone in a previous post suggested changing the answering machine message to let people know you only answer legitimate calls and to leave a message for a call back. That sounds like what we're going to have to do

I have posted many complaints to many complaint boards about all these scammer numbers but no one has been able to help or stop them. Now I use an answering machine to screen all my calls and I tell anyone I give my number to that I will not answer calls but let my answering machine screen them and they all understand and will leave a message. I told them if they don't leave a message then I will not call them back thinking they are scammers because most scammers will not leave a message unless it's a robocall and I know most of those ARE scammers because I am also on that worthless "Do Not Call" list that doesn't do any good either. As a matter of fact I have notice every time I re-register my landline and cell phones for the 'Do Not Call" list I will get a rush of more scamming calls for awhile. After a few months the calling will slow down some, I even will have a week once in a while where I won't get any calls, ( the sweet sound of no ringing lol) which makes me wonder if someone is selling the no call list to these scammers? I still get scammer calls but since I don't answer my landline and I don't hand out my cell number to anyone but family my blood pressure, frustration, and my sanity have been so much better, plus I have been keeping a list of all the numbers that have called my landline and not left messages for the past year just in case the government ever actually decides to do something about it they can have my 14 pages,(and growing), of numbers to start with, but I really don't see that happening anytime soon in my life time. I think I have had about all the really bad scammer calls like the IRS, Microsoft about viruses on my computer, (boy was that one a fun one), calls form Windows tech, and even a computer tech, and recently I got a call from someplace that said I entered a contest, (which I don't do) to win $25,000.00 in cash and I had won, (Whoopee)! Then they asked ,(for tax purposes) what was our yearly income, then told me my middle class income was to poor for this contest, (WOW). I have never heard of such a thing in my life so now I know that one was a new scam. So People who have a yearly income around $50 or $60,000.00 beware! So if there is anyone out there who is sick and tired of hearing from all these scammers, oh and some of the scammers now pretending to be form charities groups like Cancer, Vets support, Homeless Vets, police, fireman's, Children's Cancer,Students Exchange, NRA, United Cancer support FD, Women's Cancer, Autistic Child, AM Heart ASS, Cancer Survivor, US Arm for Assn., to name just a few. I even had one that my caller ID was "Illegal Scam", glad they warned me lol. I think I have even had calls from almost all the states cause the caller ID will say, Texas Call, Minnesota Call, Missouri Call, Mason City, IA., Golden, CO.,Florida Call, New York and so on and so on. I think you get my drift LOL. Any more I don't do business with anyone I didn't call personally myself, it's just safer that way. Well, I know this complaint won't help stop these aggravating calls but I hope my solution and warnings will help someone else's frustration and sanity. Good luck! Sincerely, Beajay

I am having the same issue! I just counted my "recent" scam calls...36 calls in the last 3 weeks. I'm about to lose my mind. They're all texas area codes, and I live in Texas. Weirdly enough, this started after I visited New York a few months. They started out as New York area codes for a while, then switched to Texas area codes. I keep blocking the numbers as they come in but they keep cahnging the number (I think I counted 26 different numbers). If anyone finds a solution, it would be much appreciated.

People can prank using prank call applications and fake id application which can be a boon in near future

I recvd a call too. 607-270-0581 from Almond, NY. Said I Owed 2980.00 and they are sending someone to my house either get the money or take me to jail for tax evasion. I knew it was a scam since they had my address from 10 years ago. But they had my address. Where are they getting this information? Scares me that they would come to my house.

Add these 3#s:
646 809 9705
646 809 9647
516 217 9473

Many individuals do not realize that "FAKE" caller IDs exist, or that these scammers get individuals' names from their social media account. That's why some of these "FAKE" caller IDs appear to be from their friends, family, & from local businesses. It's important to keep every potential victim informeed.

pls add this to list. getting calls non stop 844-206-8573

I get so many of these calls that I am thinking about changing my number or dropping my land line and using my cell phone, but my cell phone number was spoofed last week.

It seems to me that, if the FCC or FTC wanted to stop these calls, they would have been stopped long ago. I used to report them as suggested, to no avail. The govt could not organize a 3 car funeral procession. I use a referee's whistle and blast their ear, especially Card Services. Delivers great satisfaction.

My husband's cell phone received a call from my cell number and I did not call him. It shows in his caller id. We are AT&T customers. Changing number isn't guaranteed to stop this spoofing. Any other solutions?

scam phone number 772-448-3402 (probably a burner phone) - said he was from Fed. Govt. and that we failed to appear in court - that a Judge issued a warrant and would be arrested if we didn't get a certain amt. of money and to keep phone line open as we went about it - took this phone call to Sheriff's Office.....

Today i got a call from a number w my area code and same first 3 digits. I called it back to see what they would say, and it was the hospice wing at the local hospital. Very weird and creepy.

I received a phone call from this (DAVID MARTINIZE) saying his from the F.T.C. in Washington D.C. and it was very important that he talks to my Mother right-away. so I told him I have (P.O.A)Doc's on her and you could talk to me, he was persistent that he talks to her only about a package being delivered and that he would need me to fax the copy to him. so I said I'll get my attorney to get all the info. you need. than his reply was O.K. I just read you Quality Procedure for the shipping details.PH#(202)836-9696

Thank you for sharing your experience.

We’re hearing from our colleagues that those pesky government imposters are at it again, using the FTC’s name to try to con people into paying them for something. Whether it’s to clean up your credit report, give you a prize, resolve a complaint against you, or pay off a debt you owe, they’re all lies. The message may be a call or an email, but it isn’t from the Federal Trade Commission, or any other federal agency. For more details, please see the FTC blog post, Spread the word about government imposters.

Phone companies don't care or they would fix this never ending problem.

Some company (or scammer) is using my cell phone number as their caller ID. I've received two calls from people very angry using foul language to take them off their calling list. This is so frustrating!

Add these numbers: (862) 227-8468; (847) 756-8708; and (317) 644-4368.

Just received a call from 1-844-807-7555 a male Indian scammer stating he was a tech calling from Microsoft and "My computer was sending them an error message that someone is trying to hack into your emails". When I told him "No it's not, my computer was fine", the person preceded to tell me "Really well if your computer is working fine then why is your email" and proceeds to tell me my email address is sending them a message that someone is trying to hack my emails". I let them know that they are trying scam and they need to stop it. Of course the male acting innocent says he's not trying to scam anyone and doesn't know what I'm talking about. I hung up of course pissed off that these individuals are continuously making these ridiculous calls on a daily bases scamming hard working Americans out of their money. When will the government catch these people and put a stop to all these scams once a for all.

I'm on a dating site, how can I tell if this persons phone number is a spam number. I just want to know if this person is for real. Because one time I trusted and thought this person was who he said he was. But my daughter found out I was talking and getting texts from some man . She found the number on my phone and was able to check it out and found out this was a spam number. She said it's easy to do and anyone can check and it doesn't cost anything. She said there is a way to check a number just by punching some number in on her cell phone and then put in the number you might think is a spam number. But she never told me how to do it. Could you tell me how?

I'm on a dating site, how can I tell if this persons phone number is a spam number. I just want to know if this person is for real. Because one time I trusted and thought this person was who he said he was. But my daughter found out I was talking and getting texts from some man . She found the number on my phone and was able to check it out and found out this was a spam number. She said it's easy to do and anyone can check and it doesn't cost anything. She said there is a way to check a number just by punching some number in on her cell phone and then put in the number you might think is a spam number. But she never told me how to do it. Could you tell me how?

I just Google strange numbers. Many times there are multiple reports of abuse. Other than that, you can call the number back (block your ID) and see who answers. I just don't answer calls from numbers I do not recognize - especially if they begin with my area code and prefix. Perhaps your daughter knows some other way? Ask her.

Add this number to your list it is a ring and dash number I think we have been getting a call from 1-240-503-0423 ring twice than they hang up on our end we have never answered and we never call back. Since we have never call back and they only ring twice were sure it is a ring and dash hoping at some point that we will call back. We don't know this number so we don't call back and today we finally added the number to both phone reject files.

Been on the 'do not call list' since 2003 last time I answered one of these "local" calls, I was told 'you can report me and be on every list you want I am out of the states and I can call you whenever and however many times I want and there is nothing you can do about it.' then promptly started chain dialing my number upon hanging up. Ended up taking phone off the hook

this scammer called claiming to be Microsoft trying to get money to fix my computer their number is 1 844 203 0065, sand 1844 622 1090

Still going on today -- Aug 25, 2017. Congress should pass a law making this a federal offense.

This is beyond unacceptable.
The technology is such that the systems KNOWS the Caller ID information DOES NOT MATCH the number of the line originating the call. Why do they not stop the call at that point? Why are the telecommunications companies complicit in these frauds? If they do not block these calls system-wide, they should give individual consumers the option to BLOCK ALL CALLS WITH MISMATCHED ID INFORMATION.
Enough is enough - and we are about a decade past that point.

Got about 8 calls today from the same area code and same three digit number but each time the last four was different..if I didn't answer the call they would not leave a message.. I did answer it once and all I could hear was a lot of people talking and couldn't understand them.. when I do call the number back it says not in service

I have been getting calls from other people telling me I just called them, when in fact I did not call them, so I am assuming someone is scamming my phone number. For several months I was receiving scam calls from my area code, and they were fake government officials, etc. so I stopped answering them, but they have been so persistent that I have been blocking each number that they use. I now have a list of about twenty or so numbers. The calls are not as frequent now, but they still call, and I just don't answer. If they are legit they will leave a message on my voicemail. I am just so tired of people trying to make money from scamming honest, hard-working people. Too bad they can't get a real job and earn an honest living.

I received 4 straight phone calls to my landline from a Buffalo, NY area code number last night around 8:00. Obviously no message left when I didn't answer. Then, got woken up around 12:30a or so to another call from a local number, with a name, Diane Browne. Few minutes later, another call from a different name and number. Checked the missed calls to find out that we received 4 numbers between 11:40p and 1:00a, which utterly ridiculous. We have 2 young children, as I'm sure many of you other folks do as well. But even if we didn't, I'd still be furious that spam calls are now occurring at all hours of the night.

Screw with them.keep them on the line if you have time.I did that for 10 minutes and pissed the guy off.no more calls from them

Some unknown spoof caller has setup a computerized calling routine on my smart phone where by every few minutes I receive calls from different numbers all over the country using anonymous random phone numbers. Is there any way to stop this very irritating scam from continuing. Since around 11:30 AM today my phone has rung with more then 150 robo type calls that go to my voice mailbox.

Keep getting calls from Indians claiming to represent DSHS and wanting to complete information about my medical enrollment (?) Use contact details for my address / location that I know are fraudulent. Call center, very noisy. I wouldn't confirm, told them they needed to stop calling me and that their claims and offers made no sense. They specifically wanted to know who my primary care physician was. Creepy.

They escalated to a more English-speaking 'supervisor', who proceeded to try to obtain the same details. I refused. He finally gave up, called me a jerk and said that he didn't have time for this, said that I shouldn't pick up the phone.

When I returned the call it was to a legit number in TX, guy answered and said hello, this is Danny. Obviously they spoofed the Caller ID too.

Very clever.

I getting calls from people that I called them, what should I do?

You might be getting those calls because a scammer is using technology to make your number show up on other people's caller ID when he calls them.

People see your number, and call back out of curiousity. You could use your answering machine for a while until the calls stop.

I have been getting calls from the medical, hospital, doctor's, drug stores, ECT! I know they are spoofing the numbers most of the time, but I deal with my doctor, Hospital and drug stores! I have to answer! If my hospital, doctor's or drug stores call I need to find out what they need! Now I have to put up with some SOB trying to sell this credit card reduced rates, solar panels ECT! I have tried to report them, but to who? All these places want names,times ECT! I get a least 4 to 5 calls a day! I know I can not be the only person this is happying to?? Why can they not have a number or short form to feel out? Most of all why can these calls not be stopped without me having to pay a arm and leg for some device that really does not stop them WE NEED HELP!

Getting calls from local area code but the 3 digit prefix, 147, does not exist in this particular locale. They're obviously spoofing the caller ID. It is a recording but its also very evident that a live person is listening as "Jeremy" proceeds to tell you that you have recently inquired about a "medical brace" then he asks if that is correct. More obvious is that the idiot is trying to get you to respond...more than likely to get your voice or a positive "Yes" which now you have given approval for charges to your phone. If you get a phone number with the last eight digits being 147-8969, do not answer!!!!!!!

I get these calls regularly, even on my USDA phone at work... The worst and most cynical incident was a call requesting money for families of deceased policemen. I confronted the caller, who referred me to his supervisor. I told him not to call me again, and to use his intel to acquire my address send mailers about what his org does if he wants my donation. The call was from a local number with a name attached in the caller id. Was it a scam? Would a police family relief org do this? In this time of pressure on police departments it is sad that there is another challenge to credibility. A perfect storm of bad exposure for people who only encounter police officers at parades and festivals.

I had a scam call one time & the caller id had my name & number!!!!!!!!!!!

I have opt out of a lot of mail and still get so much mail
and still get a lot of unwanted mail in my mail box just know that it is a shame you have to pay dma money to get your name off a list that you never asked to be added to.I think you should not have to pay for this serice.

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