Wisconsin News

Familiar phone scam has a tech upgrade

Credit card scam now using Caller ID to burn consumers

Familiar phone scam has a tech upgrade

LA CROSSE, Wis. (WKBT) - A familiar phone scam is once again making its way around Wisconsin, but this time it has a technological upgrade.

It's a variation on a scam that made the rounds two years ago, automated robocalls claiming to be from "Cardholder Services" offering lower credit card rates. But this time the scammers are manipulating caller ID to try and throw you off.

Criminals can use technology to make caller ID show whatever number they want. Many times, a number will appear that is similar to your number.

That makes people pick up for several reasons. One, the call appears to be local. Also, the similarity in numbers piques a person's interest.

Finally, because the number is local, it may belong to another member of the community. That means instead of something like card services showing up on the ID, it will show an actual person's name, making it seem more legitimate.

If you receive a robocall about lowering credit rates, hang up. Even if you press a key on your phone it makes it more likely that you'll receive more calls.

A viewer also sent us a scam call they received recently.

R.J. in La Crosse received a call from the Washington D.C. area. He was told he won a U.S. federal grant for $10,200. He was told he qualified for it because he wasn't convicted of a crime.

All they needed to move forward was R.J.'s checking account info. R.J. was smart and hung up, when he called the number back, the call was "rejected."

News 8 called the number as well, and got the "rejected" message.

If you see (202) 697-7222 on caller I-D, don't answer.

If you know of any scams, we'd like to hear about them so we can let other people know. You can email mmcpherson@wkbt.com, please include a copy of the scam.

Or leave a message on our News8000 Facebook page. For more information about how you can report the scam, visit the Consumer Protection Bureau website.

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