AI-Driven Phone Scams on the Rise, With Americans Receiving 14 Spam Calls Monthly

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AI-Driven Phone Scams Becoming More Prevalent, With Americans Receiving an Average of 14 Spam Calls Monthly

Phone fraud and spam calls are on the rise, driven by the use of artificial intelligence (AI) technology by scammers. According to a recent study by voice security provider Hiya, one out of every four calls flagged as unknown is ultimately determined to be unwanted or spam. This increase in activity means that Americans are now receiving an average of 14 spam calls per month.

Hiya’s study, presented at the State of the Call Summit on October 5th, analyzed 98 billion calls globally, of which 25% were flagged as spam or fraud. In the United States alone, out of the 2.13 billion calls observed, 27% were flagged as spam. However, only 1% were identified as fraud, while 26% were categorized as nuisance calls.

While there has been a steady decline in global spam calls since the last quarter of 2022, scammers are adapting by employing new deceptions and utilizing AI and spoofing technologies, adding complexity to their attempts at defrauding consumers.

In response to the increasing problem, American consumers have been proactive in reporting unknown calls. Operation Stop Spam Calls, an initiative launched by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) this summer, has played a role in improving reporting. In July, the FCC reported promising results, including a 99% decline in auto warranty scam calls and an 88% month-to-month decrease in student loan scam calls.

Nonetheless, scammers may have shifted their tactics to continue deceiving consumers despite the targeted efforts of Operation Stop Spam Calls. The Hiya report identified the top phone scams of 2023, indicating a persistent challenge in combating these fraudulent activities.

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SMS and MMS fraud and scams also plague consumers. In 2022 alone, over 321,000 Americans were targeted by mobile-phone-based scams, commonly known as smishing scams. Additionally, MMS or mmishing scams pose a significant problem.

The Hiya study, conducted in partnership with KONTXT (part of RealNetworks), analyzed text message scams and uncovered the top text message scams. These scams include:

– Phishing messages imitating financial institutions
– Offers for free gifts or prizes
– Fake delivery notifications
– Messages pretending to be from government agencies requesting personal information
– Job offer scams

Although spam calls and texts have declined in the past year due to collaborative efforts between relevant agencies, scammers persist in employing new strategies. Americans must remain vigilant in protecting themselves from these phone scams.

Overall, the rise of AI-driven phone scams highlights the need for continued efforts to combat fraudulent activities and safeguard consumers. With technological advancements, scammers have become more sophisticated, necessitating increased vigilance and reporting from individuals and robust measures from relevant authorities to mitigate the risks associated with spam calls and text message scams.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) Related to the Above News

What is AI-driven phone fraud?

AI-driven phone fraud refers to the use of artificial intelligence technology by scammers to carry out fraudulent activities over the phone. Scammers utilize AI algorithms and techniques to mimic real people or automate their deceptive calls, making it more difficult for recipients to identify them as fraudulent.

Why are there more spam calls now?

The rise in spam calls can be attributed to scammers adapting and utilizing AI and spoofing technologies. These advancements allow scammers to employ new tactics and complexities in their attempts to defraud consumers. Despite efforts to combat spam calls, scammers continually find ways to outsmart security measures.

How many spam calls do Americans receive on average each month?

According to a study by voice security provider Hiya, Americans receive an average of 14 spam calls per month. These calls are flagged as unwanted or spam, and it indicates the prevalence of phone fraud and the need for consumer protection.

What initiatives have been taken to combat spam calls?

Operation Stop Spam Calls, launched by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), the Department of Justice (DOJ), and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), is an initiative aimed at reducing spam calls. It encourages consumers to report unknown calls, and promising results have been reported, including declines in various scam call types.

Are scammers targeting consumers through text messages as well?

Yes, scammers also target consumers through text messages. SMS and MMS fraud, commonly known as smishing scams, are prevalent. These scams involve deceptive texts that attempt to trick individuals into sharing personal and financial information. Additionally, mmishing scams through text messages pose a significant threat.

What are some common text message scams?

The Hiya study revealed several common text message scams, including phishing messages imitating financial institutions, offers for free gifts or prizes, fake delivery notifications, messages pretending to be from government agencies requesting personal information, and job offer scams. These scams aim to deceive recipients and obtain sensitive information.

What can individuals do to protect themselves from phone and text message scams?

Individuals can protect themselves by remaining vigilant and adopting certain measures. These include not answering or returning calls from unknown numbers, avoiding clicking on suspicious links in text messages, being cautious of sharing personal information, and reporting spam calls and text message scams to relevant authorities.

What measures need to be taken to combat AI-driven phone scams?

Combating AI-driven phone scams requires coordinated efforts between individuals and relevant authorities. Individuals should continue to report spam calls and text message scams to their phone service providers, the FCC, and other consumer protection agencies. Authorities need to invest in robust technological solutions and enforcement measures to stay ahead of scammers' evolving tactics.

Please note that the FAQs provided on this page are based on the news article published. While we strive to provide accurate and up-to-date information, it is always recommended to consult relevant authorities or professionals before making any decisions or taking action based on the FAQs or the news article.

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