Election Calls: Phone Scam Overview
Today it seems that the U.S. has never been more divided politically. People on both sides are very passionate about their beliefs and are becoming more politically active. Scammers are quick to pick up on this and many use elections as a way to phish for information.
How the Election Calls Phone Scam Work
There are many different variations of election-related phone scams. Below are a few of the most common scams:
Like charity phone scams, in the donations call scam a scammer will pretend to be calling on behalf of a politician for fundraising purposes. The caller will tell you that they are working on a political campaign and ask if you’d like to donate. If you say yes you would like to donate, the caller will then ask for your credit card information or give you special instructions for sending a payment.
Political Survey Call
The caller will say that they are calling on behalf of a political survey company and they would like to ask you a few questions and in return you’ll be rewarded with a free gift. Once the survey is over the caller will state that there is a small shipping fee that needs to be paid before they mail out your gift. They will ask for credit card information to pay for the fee.
Voter Registration Call
The scammer will call pretending to be a state or county official working to register voters. In order to do this they need you to confirm information like your current address and social security number. Even if you know you are already registered to vote they will say that you are not and that they are working off of an official list of unregistered voters.
How to Avoid These Scams
The best way to avoid these scams is to keep the following things in mind:
Never share personal information with a caller.
It’s best to not participate in surveys that request any sort of personal information. Don’t share your name, phone number, address, or any sort of financial information with a survey. Surveys should be anonymous and don’t need this type of information to be conducted. Just hang up if someone starts asking for personally identifying information about you.
Don’t trust unsolicited calls.
If you get a call from someone claiming to be a voter registration official or a campaign volunteer don’t trust them. To find information on voter registration you can go to USA.gov. If you would like to make a donation to a politician you should go to their official site.
How to Report These Scams
You can report these scams to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC). If the caller was asking for donations you should report it to the campaign offices.
Election calls are mostly an issue around election times. It’s important to keep these scams in mind when election season starts. You can help spread the word about election call phone scams by leaving your feedback on phone numbers in our reverse phone lookup app for iPhone. If you don’t have an iPhone you can still leave your feedback on numbers and read the feedback of others in our online phone book.