AG offers tips to guard against phone scams

File Photo.
File Photo.

INDIANAPOLIS (WANE)– Indiana Attorney General Greg Zoeller is urging people to sign up for the state’s Do Not Call list due to a recent surge in reported phone scams.

Recently, Zoeller’s office said there has been an increase in complaints against telephone credit scams, often referred to as “Rachel Calls,” which claim to offer lower interest rates and other credit-related services for an up-front fee.

“If your number is registered on the Do Not Call list and you receive a solicitation call, it is a violation of our law and you should assume it’s a scam and hang up immediately,” Zoeller said.

Zoeller said his office has also received complaints of Caller ID spoofing, a practice in which a scammer falsifies his or her phone number to mimic a local number, potentially tricking consumers into answering calls they think are coming from someone they know.

In a news release issued Friday, Zoeller offered consumers the following tips to protect against telephone privacy scams:

If you don’t recognize the Caller ID number, consider letting the call go to voice mail;
If the call is pre-recorded, don’t press any numbers; and
If your number is on the Do Not Call list, be aware that any telemarketing call you get may be a scam

The next quarterly deadline to help reduce annoying sales calls and text messages is Tuesday, Aug.19, Zoeller’s office said. Consumers can register their residential landline, cell, VOIP or prepaid wireless numbers.

People do not need to re-register unless their address has changed, according to Zoeller’s office. To sign up or to confirm a number is already on the list, visit http://www.IndianaConsumer.com or call 1.888.834.9969. Out-of-state area codes can also be added as long as the billing address is located in Indiana.

People who are registered and receive an unwanted call can file a complaint by visiting http://www.IndianaConsumer.com.

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