Phone Scam

It is incredibly embarrassing to share, but I am going to share so that other people know.
Today I lost two hours of my life and a small sum of money to very skillful scammers.

Here is how it worked. They called with an automated message, which I was about to ignore, but then I listened, and it was a request to approve (or disapprove) a large purchase on Amazon. I listened twice and then pressed 1 to say, “I do not approve.” Then the call was redirected to a human, and it was all like – yes, please confirm you didn’t want to purchase this iPhone, what other purchases did you make today which you can recognize. Then all this normal stuff, like do you share your account with anybody, then it started to be suspicious. They asked to verify the email, but when I did, and they said they would send a verification code, it turned out that they misspelled it. I got it on the second time only. It took me some more time to realize that they were not Amazon, but the way they talked and asked me to do one small thing at a time, it all looked normal. Only when I realized that I already gave them more information than they could possibly need, and when they asked to start screen sharing, I hang up on them.

I immediately changed my amazon password, my amazon email, and enabled two-step verification. And then I called actual amazon and notified them about what just happened. One important thing they told me that they would never call anybody unless the call was pre-arranged, i.e., if I requested the call. The money lost was for “account confirmation. purchase,” which was one before the last step for me to realize what was going on. And again, they were so-so-so “step-by-step, that it was easy to lose track of the sequence of actions

Good thing that no credit card information was accessed and that I reacted fast. However, I could figure it out earlier!

Time is the only non-replenishable resource, and the lost time is what I regret the most.

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