Another day, another phone scam. Yesterday, I received a call from +442085044434 by someone trying to get me to "invest" in BitCoin and other Cryptocurrencies.
I managed to drag the call out for 6 minutes - have a listen:
The caller admits the trading and advice isn't regulated. That they don't need permission to make marketing calls. And that Estonia is the home of many Cryptocurrencies(!)
I'm not a brilliant scam bater. I didn't manage to get his address, discover when he got my number from, or find out any significant details. But that wasn't my goal. With most of these phone scammers, I have two objectives:
- Keep them on the line so they can't defraud anyone less sceptical than me.
- Get them to see the error of their ways.
I'm usually pretty good a (1). Stringing people along is easy, but risks getting further unwanted calls.
(2) is more difficult. I sometimes ask them if they think what they're doing is legal. Or I ask what they wanted to be when they grew up. Some people genuinely think the call-centre they work in is a legitimate company - they're also being scammed by the scammers. It's usually fairly easy to turn those people. Asking them if they've ever Googled for "company name + scam" is enough to get them to see the truth.
Sadly, I don't think my call with "Björn" is likely to have changed his mind.
What's doubly annoying is that the phone number has been marked as a scam for months. According to OfCom it is registered to BT. Of course, it could be a spoofed number. STIR/SHAKEN can't come fast enough!