Robocalls are inexpensive and easy to place, making them popular among scammers. Too often, recipients of robocalls compromise their security by revealing private information, according to new data.
Did you receive a robocall today? More than half of people (52%) receive at least one robocall per day, according to a new survey from Clutch, the leading B2B research, ratings, and reviews firm.
Of the survey’s respondents, nearly 40% receive multiple robocalls per day, the survey revealed.
A robocall is an automated phone call placed for marketing or scamming purposes.
Robocalls are common because of three factors:
- Ease of operating a robocall scam
- Low cost of making phone calls
- Ability to place calls from anywhere
These factors make tracking and apprehending robocall scammers challenging for authorities.
“I can go to a website, upload an audio file, put in a range of phone numbers, use a prepaid debit card, and annoy San Francisco for $400 to $500,” said Alex Quilici, CEO of YouMail, a service for blocking robocalls. “When it’s that easy to commit a crime, criminals will commit it.”
One-Fifth of People Have Revealed Private Information to a Robocaller
More than one in five people (21%) have either accidentally or intentionally given their private information to a robocall scammer.
Robocallers use a variety of tactics to increase the success of their scams. The most troubling is known as “neighbor spoofing,” or tricking a caller ID to display a local number to the person being called, even if the call is placed from far away.
Nearly half of people (44%) say they receive a robocall with an area code matching their personal phone number at least once a day.
When people see a call from a local number, they are more likely to pick up because they assume a neighbor or local business is calling them.
Robocalls often spoof real phone numbers to conduct this scam. If the robocall recipient calls the number back, it can confuse or undermine the individual or business that owns the real phone number.
Nearly One-Quarter of Robocalls Are About Health Topics
Robocalls typically focus on health topics. More than one-fifth of people who are likely to answer calls from unknown phone numbers (22%) say they usually receive health-related robocalls.
Robocall scammers take advantage of current events to mislead people, including the recent political debate over U.S. healthcare. Scammers try to sell poor or nonexistent health insurance.
“The scammers try to figure out ways they can leverage what’s going on in the world to do their scams,” Quilici said.
The survey suggests that businesses and individuals should be wary of the increasing prevalence and sophistication of robocalls.