Scam alert

BBB says that the best way to avoid the scam is by not answering calls with unfamiliar numbers.

FRANKLIN COUNTY — The Better Business Bureau is warning consumers that there have been recent reports of the “Can you hear me?” scam in Vermont.

BBB Scam Tracker indicates that since 2017, there have been nearly 10,000 reports of this phishing scam throughout the United States and nearly 150 reports in Massachusetts alone.

The scam is perpetrated by forcing someone via a phone call to saying the word “yes,” typically by asking “can you hear me?” and then using the recording to authorize a purchase right away or in the future. The scammer will pretend to be with a company or department from an organization. For example, one scammer in a recent report from Massachusetts claimed to be from TripAdvisor, another said they were part of the “Rewards Department.”

BBB says that the best way to avoid the scam is by not answering calls with unfamiliar numbers, adding that if you do pick up the phone and the caller immediately tries to pressure you into saying “yes” or “okay,” hang up right away.

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