COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. - Has it been awhile since you last purchased a car? Do you remember how long your warranty is guaranteed?
If you’re getting contacted out of the blue, with claims you need to renew your car warranty - just hang up.
This scam is re-circulating, with a new twist.
How it works
Scammers impersonate car dealerships or manufacturers, claiming your ‘car warranty’ is up and needs to be renewed.
Previously, it was common for hackers to send letters with this request. But now, the phone calls are becoming more popular.
In order to ‘renew the warranty’ scammers want you to ‘verify your account’ by confirming your credit card information and in some cases your social security number.
“The calls are so believable,” said Les Keaton, a scam victim. “They knew my wife’s name, they knew what street I lived on, they knew all of my cars. It was like I was talking with someone with Dodge.”
What stood out most to Les Keator, a victim of this scam, is how much scammers knew about him and his family before even making the call.
That’s how they trick you. They have access to tools where they can come off legitimate and trustworthy because they know the cars you drive, when and where you bought them, and even other family members listed on the account.
“When they called stating all the cars we drove, and all the specifics about our account, it was easy to think, well they must be legitimate,” said Keaton.
Det. Jon Price with the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office explains many people fall victim to this scam now because it’s harder to distinguish the identity of the caller.
“We’re seeing more and more, people are being researched, whether it’s social engineering on Facebook or other mediums,” he said. “The suspects are actually taking the time to look up these people and find out about them.”
What to do
Make sure to set up caller ID on your phone - so you can screen incoming calls. Keep in mind legitimate telemarketers are required to display the name of the company they’re representing. This will help you sort out what’s fake.
Bottom line: don’t provide any personal or financial information to anyone over the phone, unless you’re certain you can verify the caller.
Report a scam tip
Email me at Stephanie.Sierra@krdo.com. We’ll investigate.