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Don’t Fall for This Verification Code Scam
Verification code scam: a stranger asks for a verification code to be sent to your phone

Don’t Fall for This Verification Code Scam

There is no limit to the number of ways that scammers try to con people. One of the newer cons to be aware of is the verification code scam. This scam is growing increasingly common with the popularity of online marketplaces where people buy and sell items. What’s unique about this scam is that the scammer uses a phone number associated with you to cheat other people out of their money. If you have received a text message asking for a six-digit verification code, please forward the message directly to 7726 (SPAM), as the number will then be blocked by most network operators.

In the verification code scam, you place an online ad to sell something. You add your phone number, no matter if cell or landline number. Then the scammer enters the picture. They send you a text or message that they need you to verify you’re a real person, not a bot or a scammer yourself. They say that their phone requires a six-digit verification code to proceed with the transaction. The six-digit verification code is played to you through a voice messaging system or sent to you by text. You enter the code.

You Just Got Scammed

What the other party actually did was cause you to set up an online voicemail and phone service. When you enter the verification code, the recording tells you not to share it with anybody else. However, you ignored the warning and shared it with the scammer. They end up with a new phone number that forwards calls to your cell phone or landline. The goal of this con is to get your number to use as a forwarding service or means of getting their own online calling, texting and voicemail service for free. Most of these scammers drop your number in a hurry, moving on to their next victim.

How to Solve This Problem

You can quickly find your way out of this scam. To get your personal number back, you need to re-add it to your own online voice messaging and call forwarding service. If you don’t have one yet, you’ll need to establish one. You’ll use your real, personal number as the forwarding number for the new account. The purpose of doing this is when you get asked for your phone number, you give the person the number associated with the online account, not your cellphone or house. Since the online phone number can be set up to always go to voicemail, you can screen all the calls that go to it. Many people give their online phone account numbers to people at the bar or to store cashiers who ask for a phone number.

Set Up Your New Online Voice Account

To set up your new online voice account, add a new linked number. This is the number you gave to the scammer. If you get a warning that it’s already in use, this is a good thing. It means that you’re taking it away from the scammer. If you don’t see the warning, it means the scammer dropped it. However, you still need to reclaim it so that you don’t get scammed again. Once you’ve set up your correct phone number as the forwarding number for your new voice account, that’s all you need to do. Although this scam doesn’t put your identity or bank account at risk, it does serve as a sort of admission ticket for a scammer to perpetuate other cons. In the future, remember to never share your verification code with anybody.

Comments (12)


  1. tabithadaniels59

    I love to sell my dog

  2. sean.kelsy0513

    Thanks

  3. Is there a way to report these scammers? I had THREE different phone numbers message me and try to get me to enter a code before I even saw this blog. Thankfully I knew it was garbage. Please let me know if I can report the phone numbers in some way.

  4. Laura Burkhead

    Can I report these scams somehow? Just had two numbers message me asking if they could send a code to verify if my account was real or fake. I literally just made my first post 30 minutes ago. Thankfully I seen this blog post before replying!

  5. Jamie and Jason Skelly

    I was contacted by three scammers in one day. Two of them, asking if they could send a “certified check” through the mail, and they would arrange for someone to “pick up item” because they were out of town. I could tell right away that they didn’t read the add. The other was asking for a six digit verification code. Just be aware–if something seems odd, it probably is.

    Jamie

  6. So if this happened what do I do

  7. sandraluv.sl

    This is so crazy….it just happened to me. I didnt read this information before I posted. Scammers get on my nerves!

  8. Shay Johnson

    This literally just happened to me. So exactly what do I do?

  9. Yes I had one scammer persistently asking me for the code didn’t even care about the dog. And the others are saying that they want to mail me a cashiers check and they live in Alaska and stuff like that. Saying that someone will come get the dog for them

  10. Reyna Robblee

    Phone numbers with the area code (631) have been asking to send a six digit code. If I didn’t reply, they would keep messaging me question marks and asking to send the code. I had to block the numbers for it to stop.

  11. Someone told me that as well I gave him my address but I didn’t know until I found all this out now. So what should I do now? Someone please help

  12. Just got a call and this guy said he was willing to drive from California all the way up to Virginia to get my dog. I knew it was a bunch of crap right away and to make matters work worse he had a recording of screaming kids in the background to make it seem like he was safe and legit.. SMH the nerve of some people.

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