Yourself from Telephone Fraud
with caution if a caller:
Uses high-pressure sales tactics
Insists on an immediate decision
Offers something too good to be true
Requests your credit card number for "verification"
Gives an urgent demand for payment
States that something is "free", with a requirement
that you pay for something such as handling, mailing or references you
Suggests you should make a purchase or investment
on the basis of "trust"
to Look for and be Aware of:
If you feel you have been victimized by telemarketing
fraud, call the Better Business Bureau or the National Fraud Information
Center (NFIC) at (800) 876-7060.
Carefully examine sweepstakes entries or other
unsolicited materials you plan to return to ensure you are not agreeing
to make a purchase that could show up on your phone bill, switch your long
distance carrier or local services carrier.
Never pay anything in order to enter a sweepstakes
or claim a prize. Legitimate sweepstakes or prize offers don't ask for
payment because it's illegal. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true,
it probably is.
Never agree to dial a few numbers to help a
caller test your phone lines. Telephone companies can test your lines remotely
without bothering you.
Never give Personal Identification Numbers (PIN),
Social Security or credit card numbers to someone who has called. Local
telephone companies never call customers to verify this information.
Be cautious about returning pages or answering
machine messages to area codes you don't recognize. Consult the phone book
or call the operator to verify the area code is domestic.
The phone is just like a door to your home.
You don't have to open it or invite someone in, and you can ask guests
to leave at any time. Remember, sometimes it's not rude to simply hang
up the phone.