One of the best tools of the trade for scammers is a simple telephone. While a tool is only as useful as the person wielding it, a scammer learns many tricks to make that tool an effective one. A common technique they use to pressure someone into handing over their money is the threat of physical harm.
If a scammer calls a person and offers a product or service, but the target doesn’t buy into the sales pitch, a scammer can switch to a more aggressive means of persuading action. The scammer can threaten to cause physical harm to that person or someone he or she loves unless that individual sends the scoundrel money.
To add credence to the threat of physical harm, the scammer can use the information he or she knows about the target as a weapon. For example, if the scammer can find the target’s social media page, the thief can learn about the children, pets, parents, vehicles, job, home location and other information about the person. The scammer could then threaten to harm the target’s child or pet, show up unexpectedly at the person’s workplace or home, and use details of the thing being threatened to show the target he or she means business.
It’s extremely unlike that a scammer will cause the harm she or he threatens, but take precautions just in case. First, hang up the call with the scammer. If the scammer calls back, hang up again. Do no communicate with that person further. Next, write down everything you can remember about the person including gender, any accent the person used, any details the person may have revealed about him or herself such as a name or location. Then, call the local police and describe what happened, making sure to turn over the information you just wrote down.
Scammers wants to make money, and their time is best utilized trying to convince the person on the next phone call to give it to them. They don’t want to waste their time on you if they know it’s a dead end.
Always remember that your best defense against a telephone scammer is the End Call button on your phone. It’s a scammer’s worst enemy and your greatest defense. Use it with extreme prejudice against these scoundrels to protect yourself against their harmful words.