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New phone scam hits Alaska

By Shannon Ballard 9:37 PM January 31, 2014

“One ring” phone scam preys on curiosity

ANCHORAGE - Crooks are preying on your curiosity.

The Better Business Bureau said a new phone scam is hitting Alaskans.

Scammers use automated equipment to dial thousands of cell phones, but hang up after just one ring.

People return the calls and that’s when they’re charged unauthorized fees.

Returned calls are often directed to expensive international hotlines — sometimes peddling “adult entertainment.”

The BBB’s words of caution — don’t return calls from unfamiliar numbers.

“These scammers are being paid as a third party vendor through your cell phone bill, just like you had put a charge on your phone because you put an application or something on there,” said Michelle Tabler with the Better Business Bureau.

Unapproved charges sneaking onto phone bills is one of the most common consumer complaints in America, the BBB said.

If you mistakenly fall for the “one ring” scam, contact your phone provider right away.

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