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FCC warns of nationwide Sierra Leone phone scam

Local News
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The Federal Communication Commission (FCC) is warning people of a nationwide phone scam from Sierra Leone.

It’s called the “One Ring” scam. The aim is to have you call the international number back, resulting in high phone charges. DO NOT call the number back. Instead, authorities recommend simply blocking these numbers.

There are also several apps you can install to identify potential scam phone calls. ‬

The following is a press release from the FCC:

The Federal Communications Commission is alerting consumers to reported waves of “One Ring” or “Wangiri” scam robocalls targeting specific area codes in bursts, often calling multiple times in the middle of the night.  These calls are likely trying to prompt consumers to call the number back, often resulting in per minute toll charges similar to a 900 number.   Consumers should not call these numbers back.

Recent reports indicate these calls are using the “222” country code of the West African nation of Mauritania.  News reports have indicated widespread overnight calling in New York State and Arizona. 

Generally, the One Ring scam takes place when a robocaller calls a number and hangs up after a ring or two.  They may call repeatedly, hoping the consumer calls back and runs up a toll that is largely paid to the scammer. 

  • Consumer Tips: Do not call back numbers you do not recognize, especially those appearing to originate overseas.
  • File a complaint with the FCC if you received these calls: www.fcc.gov/complaints
  • If you never make international calls, consider talking to your phone company about blocking outbound international calls to prevent accidental toll calls.

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