Sophisticated scam targeting Verizon Wireless customers

Better Business Bureau says scam uses Caller ID spoofing technology, fake website to garner personal information.

The Better Business Bureau recently warned of a scam targeting Verizon Wireless customers that tries to trick users into giving up personal information.

According to the BBB, the scam begins when a customer gets a call that appears to come from "Technical Support" and claims to be Verizon Wireless. It is a recorded message saying you are eligible to receive a voucher for your account. You need to visit a website to claim it. The web address given contains "Verizon" and the value of the voucher. One recent version of the scam used "verizon54.com," but watch for variations, the BBB stated.

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On the Verizon Wireless site commenters have noted "vzw103.com," "www.vzw73.com" and others as fake website names. It also appears that this scam has been going in some form or another for quite awhile.

"You go to the website, and it looks official. It has the Verizon Wireless colors, graphics and navigation (see screen shot below). The site prompts you to "Verify My Account" by entering your cellphone number, Verizon ID and password and the last four digits of your Social Security number. Enter your info, and you won't receive a voucher. You will, however, open yourself up to the risk of identity theft," the BBB stated.

The BBB offers these suggestions for this scamfest:

  • Watch for look alike URLs. Be wary of sites that have Verizon as a subdomain of another URL (i.e. "verizon.scamwebsite.com" or part of a longer URL (i.e. "verizonvoucher105.com").
  • Consider how the business normally reaches you. Beware of a departure from the normal routine. Verizon Wireless typically sends its customers text messages, so be wary of a phone call.
  • Contact the business: When in doubt, call the business's customer support line to check the legitimacy of the offer. Be sure to find the phone number on your bill or by a web search -- not the website the scammers gave you.
  • Don't believe what you see. The website that scammers created for this con looks amazingly similar to the real Verizon Wireless site. But ripping off logos, colors and graphics online is easy for scammers. Just because it looks real, does not mean it is.  

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