When your mobile number is stolen and a fraudster creates a Google Voice account in your name, it is known as a Google Voice Scam. They will then proceed to con other individuals (in your name, technically) while remaining undiscovered. The fraud is also known as the “Google Voice Code Verification” scam, and it can affect anyone who has ever publicly exposed their phone number on the Internet, such as when posting an ad.
The fraudster will next contact the potential victim as though they had responded to the advertisement. The fraudster will next urge you to open a message with a six-digit number (under various pretexts). Your phone number will be hijacked once you have revealed the code.
- 1 What about Google Voice?
- 2 How Does the Google Voice Scam Work?
- 3 The Google Voice Scam Occurs Where?
- 4 How to Stay Away from the Google Voice Scam?
- 4.1 Is it safe to make phone calls with Google Voice?
- 4.2 How to Avoid Scams With Verification Codes?
What about Google Voice?
Google Voice is a free service from Google that allows you to make and receive calls, SMS, and use call forwarding. The service debuted in 2009 and has since become a must-have for a large number of users. However, as more capable devices, modern chat applications, and other features became available, Google Voice began to slip behind – until the long-awaited 2017 update.
Individuals and small enterprises alike utilize it to keep their communication costs down. It’s just a more handy and cost-effective way to communicate than regular phone conversations. Google Voice is easy to use; all you need is decent internet connectivity and a microphone to get started. The nicest part about Google Voice is that it’s virtually fully free – most of the app’s functions are available without charge. Only in a few circumstances will you need to credit your Google Voice account, such as when making international calls.
How Does the Google Voice Scam Work?
- Anyone in the United States or Canada who has a Google account and a contact number can create a Google Voice account. A verification code must be given to the person’s phone in order to avoid abuse.
- To get around this stage, fraudsters scour major online markets for anyone trying to sell something.
- The culprit will respond to the advertisement by feigning interest. They will then clarify that they need to confirm who they are speaking with first.
- They’ll claim that sending a pin to the victim’s smartphone will do this.
- If the victim accepts, the offender will try to create a Google Voice account with the victim’s mobile number.
- Google will then send the victim a text message. Usually, the text will state that it is not to be shared.
- Despite this, many individuals will mistake the code’s intent and hand it over to the criminal.
- The attacker now has an anonymous Google Voice account, and the victim may have no cause to suspect anything based on how the conversation concluded.
The Google Voice Scam Occurs Where?
This scam is most common on CraigsList. It’s one of several social media frauds to avoid, and it also happens on sites like Steam. If you advertise something for sale, you are more likely to be victimized. Anyone who asks for people to contact them, on the other hand, is a prospective target.
How to Stay Away from the Google Voice Scam?
Consumers can defend themselves from similar gambits by following these steps, according to the FBI:
- Never give out a Google verification code to anyone else.
- Dealing with buyers, sellers, and Fluffy-finders in person is the only way to go. Make sure you’re using legitimate payment processors if money is going to be exchanged.
- If you’re doing business over the phone, don’t give away your email address.
- Allowing someone to push you into a deal is not a good idea. They are most likely attempting to trick you into acting without thinking if they are forcing you to respond.
Is it safe to make phone calls with Google Voice?
Google Voice, which allows you to make calls using a regular broadband internet connection, is still a viable phone option today. Individuals and small enterprises alike utilize it to save money on communication. It’s just a more handy and cost-effective option than regular phone calls.
How to Avoid Scams With Verification Codes?
- When you’ve never heard of a phone confirmation scam before, it’s easy to fall for it. The criminals practice every day, and some of them are really convincing.
- To avoid the scam, all you have to do is remember that no one would ever ask you for a code for a legitimate purpose.
- You can also prevent these scams by keeping your contact information private, although this isn’t always feasible. Both honest buyers and respectable sellers are concerned about being duped.
- It’s also worth mentioning that if you currently have a Google Voice account, no one can establish one with your phone number.
Is it possible to change the number associated with my Google Voice account?
To get rid of your Google Voice number:
- Go to your Google Voice account and sign in.
- Go to the main Google Voice menu.
- Navigate to the Google Voice Settings page.
- Request that your phone number be removed from Google Voice.
- After being redirected to an obsolete version of Google Voice, request that your phone number be removed once more.
- If you’re sure you want to erase your phone number, click “Next.”
Why would someone send me a verification code for Google Voice?
It’s a scam if you get a code that wasn’t produced while registering for Google Voice. If the code was generated by your setup, do not share anything with anyone, and block and notify the number when you receive a call requesting it.
Is it possible to utilize Google Voice without having a phone?
Yes, you can use Google Voice and Hangouts using your laptop’s Firefox and Chrome browsers, or with real Google Android & apple smartphone apps using data or Wi-Fi instead of traditional phone connectivity.