Fraud alert Stolen phone number
This is a fraud alert that of a new scam involving a stolen phone number. An acquaintance of mine noticed that his cell phone stopped working yesterday afternoon. When he investigated why it wasn’t working he uncovered a new twist on credit card fraud you should be aware of. Here is how it works:
Identity thieves were somehow able to get quite a bit of information from the victim. They were able to get his phone number, enough information to convince Verizon to transfer the victim’s phone number. They were also able to create new credit cards with the victim’s information.
So why bother switching the phone number? The identity thieves knew that the purchases they made with the credit cards would look suspicious to the credit card companies. They also knew that the credit card companies would call the victim to verify if the charges were legitimate or not. So by controlling the phone number, they were able to wait until the credit card companies called them, then lie and say the charges were legitimate. That is a pretty clever scam.
So here is what the victim did to correct this. First he called all his credit card companies to tell them what was going on so they could get his cards shut down. Next he called AT&T, his cell phone company and found out his number had been ported to Verizon. Verizon wasn’t willing to transfer his number back to AT&T until he got a police report, so that was his next step. Even after getting a police report Verizon Wireless wasn’t able to give his phone number back.
Finally, he contacted all three of the credit bureaus and had them put a freeze on his credit report. That way, even if the thieves have all of his information they shouldn’t be able to open any new accounts in his name.