0 0 lang="en-US"> Fraudsters reach out to voters through political calls and text messages - Sacramentotime.com

Fraudsters reach out to voters through political calls and text messages

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Are you tired of political calls and texts? You are not alone.

The midterm elections are fast approaching, and scammers are only increasing the number of political messages coming your way.

Therefore, it is now more difficult to determine whether this call is genuine or a scam.

Calls and SMS are received daily on mobile phones

Christopher Wood says he receives political calls and texts almost daily.

“I got at least one message a day,” he said. “I even got a couple of robocalls.”

Many times they even know his name, which makes it a little scary.

“It sort of interferes with your daily life,” he said. “You have to stop what you’re doing and see what it is, and maybe it’s a number you don’t recognize.”

Mackenzie Cabello never knows if the calls are legit or not.

“If it’s not the call I was expecting or someone I talked to that day,” she said, “it just disrupts the workflow.”

Whether you’re voting red, blue, or just want the election season to be over, scammers are targeting you, hoping that a hot button issue will be enough to get you to respond or click.

Mechele Agbayani Mills of the Better Business Bureau says it’s tempting to donate to a cause or candidate you admire.

But make sure the requests are legitimate.

“When emotions run high, you can count on bad players to take advantage of that emotional energy and make people make impulsive decisions,” she said.

How to protect yourself

She suggests checking company websites carefully to make sure they’re genuine and not fake.

Also, she says, be very careful about being asked to take a survey.

“A legitimate survey would probably ask for your demographic information, what party you support, things of that nature,” she said.

That’s okay, she says. But only scammers will ask for your Social Security number or bank account information.

Another scam to watch out for: SMS-your-vote scam.

In such cases, fraudsters are not looking for your money, but for your vote to be counted.

“You can’t vote via SMS,” she said. “You either have to go to the polls or some things you can vote by mail.”

Finally, if you just want the calls to stop, check with your carrier: most, including Verizon and AT&T, now offer robocall blockers.

Dave Henderson likes his carrier’s fraud alert program.

“If it says it’s probably a scam, I just don’t respond,” he said.

Finally, ask to have your phone number removed from voter registration to stop most political calls.

So you don’t waste money.


Don’t Waste Your Money” is a registered trademark of Scripps Media, Inc. (“Scripps”).

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