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“Can you hear me?” phone scam on the rise in Michigan

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The scam has already cost some consumers in other states. The Better Business Bureau Serving Western Michigan warns scammers could use the “yes” to authorize purchases off bank accounts

“We want people to be vigilant and aware now so that down the road, they’re like, how did my account get hacked and these charges get approved, well, you said yes two months ago on the phone and that phone call is now being used.”

Katie Grevious with the BBB in Western Michigan says if you get a phone call and immediately the caller says, “Can you hear me?”, be careful and don’t be too quick to answer “yes.” It could be part of a scam happening across the country and growing here in Michigan.

“We’re seeing two versions of scams. We have the unknown number calling, and as soon as you answer, they say can you hear, you say yes, and then click. Because we do know that with advancement in technology that AI could be used to manipulate that yes.”

Grevious says scammers could use the yes to authorize a purchase off bank accounts or something down the road. She adds other variations can include the caller asking other questions that could provide a “yes” and for those who converse, the calls could be about banking, vacation packages or warranties. While Grevious says the BBB has not received reports of monetary loss its unclear how the scams will play out over time. So, to play it safe.

“Don’t answer unknown numbers.

Grevious says the warning is not to cause panic, just cautiousness. And if you ever think your accounts have been compromised report it to the impacted entity and to the BBB.

Jennifer is an award winning broadcast news journalist with more than two decades of professional television news experience including the nation's fifth largest news market. She's worked as both news reporter and news anchor for television and radio in markets from Grand Rapids and Kalamazoo all the way to San Francisco, California.
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