The Better Business Bureau is warning consumers about a new scam involving cell phone carriers.
Scammers will attempt to get around two-factor authentication to hijack accounts and information, resulting in stolen money and identities.
A scammer will find a person’s name and phone number and then attempt to gather as much information about the victim as possible, including an address, social security number and birthday. They will then contact the victim’s mobile provider and impersonate them, telling the company that the victim’s phone was stolen and request the number be “ported” to a new provider and device.
To protect yourself from this scam, Better Business Bureau CEO Phil Catlett says to set things up as secure as possible with a mobile provider and ensure the company will notify you before it ports information over to a new device or provider.
Catlett said he hasn’t seen the scam reach West Michigan, but said it is spreading across the country quickly. Anyone who falls victim to the scam should contact their mobile provider, banks and take the standard steps to fight identity theft.
Victims should also file a report on the Better Business Bureau’s scam tracker.