Whatever You Do, Don’t Say Yes When This Chatbot Asks, ‘Can You Hear Me?’
Another in my irregular series on privacy in our era, and how to defend yourself in digital venues.
For your cell phone-Get TruCaller or some other good robo call screener/blocker. If you have an Ooma phone, set your virtual receptionist to say your name and tell caller to press one. Robo fail. For that ole land line, screen your calls. Caller ID is is worth it. And start demanding call number blocking as an available feature.
It’s the most cunning robocall scam I’ve encountered — and the fact that I’ve fallen for it more than once tells you how successful it can be.
The phone rings. You pick it up and say “hello.” There’s a brief silence and then a woman’s voice says, “Oh, hi there!” She offers an embarrassed laugh. “I’m sorry, I was having a little trouble with my headset!”
I’ve gotten this call a number of times in recent weeks, at home and at work, and each time I’ve been suckered by the lifelike opening to stay on the line longer than I normally would for a robocall or a telemarketing pitch. It’s only when I realize I’ve heard the exact same thing before that I realize I’m hearing a recording.