With caller id becoming so easy and accessible to the masses, you now need to protect yourself and things like your voice mail from caller id spoofing. Some voice mail systems won’t ask you for a pin if you are calling it from the correct number. But this number can be spoofed and that creates a major problem. So if you get a new cell phone always password protect your voice mail. Many cell phone operators, like Aliant, NBTEL, Bell, ATT, T-Mobile use caller id authentication for voice mail.
It is even rumored that Paris Hilton used sites like Fake Caller Id to gain access to other celebrities voice mail like Lindsay Lohan. ” Spoof announced today that it had terminated the accounts of more than 50 customers, including none other then Paris Hilton, who they claim used the Caller ID Spoofing service to obtain unauthorized access to voice mail accounts on a national mobile telephone network. Many of the terminated customers and the victims whose mailboxes were accessed are well-known celebrities, including Lindsay Lohan.” So what was the cost to Paris? Around $0.07 a minute. That’s what Spoof ID, another site, was charging for a hundred minute card this morning when I took a look.
If you must provide information on the phone only provide it to someone you know and you can always call them back on trusted 1-800 numbers on the back of your Bank/VISA/Mastercard/AMEX card etc. The easiest way to remove the possibility of fake caller ID related crime is to know them well enough so you can recognize their tone of voice on the phone. This way, if you absolutely have to share personal information over the phone, you will be able to do so or at least have somewhat of a peace of mind.
Also be very careful of digital emails. One of the emerging strategies is the combining of phishing and marketing technologies, such as mail merge, with automated voice response technologies. In these scams, a number is included in the email for you to call. Do not call these numbers ever. Hackers are increasingly making use of Automated Voice Response approaches almost the same as your bank does with (”please enter your credit card number you’re calling about, followed by the phone number associated with this account”) that may sound real, but they are designed to steal the four things they need the most most your name, your social security number, your credit card, and your phone number.
As it is now very easy to make a prank call online, even more caution should be exercised.