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FCC Scam Alert -- Beware of the "One-Ring" Call

Mobile phone with scam and fraud message speech bubble
Mobile phone with scam and fraud text message speech bubble
Image by Paul Michael Hughes T 0

The FCC on Friday warned consumers of a surge in robocalls known as the

"One Ring" scam — but it has nothing to do with Sauron or his minions in


Jokes aside, the "One Ring" or "Wangiri" scam targets potential victims with

a series of calls — usually from the 222 area code — often in the middle of

the night.

"Recent reports indicate these calls are using the '222' country code from

the West African nation of Mauritania," the FCC said in a news release.

"News reports have indicated widespread overnight calling in New York

State and Arizona."

It works like this: the caller (most likely an automated robocaller) dials your

number and hangs up almost immediately — typically after one ring, hence

the scam's name. The same call may repeat several times in a row,

especially in the overnight hours. Apparently, the scammer is betting you'll

be concerned after waking up to repeated calls from the same number, and

you'll call back to find out what's going on.

That's when the trap is sprung; calling back works like a 1-900 number,

running up a huge toll charge you'll see on your next phone bill.

Since there's no way to cast this One Ring into the fires of Mount Doom, the

FCC advises you never call back a phone number you don't recognize. You

can also check with your wireless phone provider to block outgoing calls to

international numbers. And, unless you know someone in Mauritania— you

shouldn't be calling anyone with a (222) phone number.


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