AG: ‘Can you hear me?’ scam calls proliferate

Complaints are soaring about telephone scammers who call and ask “Can you hear me?” to get a recipient to simply say “yes.”

The Indiana Attorney General’s Office Consumer Protection Division has received 50 complaints about such calls since Feb. 6, the office said Friday in a news release.

Scammers confirm working phone numbers answered by live persons. Numbers answered by humans are then targeted at later dates and added to lists of phone numbers resold to other scammers, according to the AG’s office. Authorities are concerned scammers also might use recorded “yes” answers as fraudulent verifications or agreements that can be used as to bill people for goods or services they did not order. The CPD said it has no reports of persons being scammed out of money as a direct result of these calls.

Attorney General Curtis Hill reminded Hoosiers to not answer the phone if they don’t know the number. People should hang up immediately if they answer a call from an unknown number in which the caller asks, “Can you hear me?”

Consumers who receive these calls can report them to the Consumer Protection Division by calling 1-800-382-5516. The office advises making a note of the number that called and reporting it so numbers can be added to a blacklist database.

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