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BBB Scam Alert: The "Can you hear me?" phone scam is still ringing (hint: Just hang up!)


The “Can you hear me?” scam has been targeting consumers for quite some time.

BBB continues to receive reports to BBB Scam Tracker about these calls. Usually, the caller will hang up immediately after you respond to the question “Can you hear me?” However, some consumers say the calls can also be about banking, vacation packages, warranties, and even Medicare cards. The callers may be impersonating a business like your bank or another financial institution, a government agency, an insurance company, or others.

So far, BBB has no reports in Scam Tracker that mention monetary loss, and BBB is unsure if any victims have reported any losses to the FTC or another entity. However, it’s unclear how the scams will play out over time or if the targets will be victimized later. 

How the scam works

You get a call from someone who almost immediately asks, “Can you hear me?” Their goal is to get you to answer “Yes,” which most people would do instinctively in that situation. There may be some fumbling around; the person may even say something like, “I’m having trouble with my headset,” or “I’ll call you right back.” But in fact, the “person” may be a robocall recording your conversation, and that “Yes” answer you gave could later be edited to make it sound like you authorized a major purchase. Your “Yes” could also confirm to the scammer that the phone number they dialed is a real number, enabling future targeting of phone call scams. The FCC previously issued a unanimous ruling making AI-generated voices in robocalls illegal.


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