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Cybersafe August 18, 2023

What is a one-ring scam and how can you protect yourself from this scheme?

Cybercriminals are getting more sophisticated in defrauding people.


Recently, the Philippine National Police Anti-Cybercrime Group (PNP-ACG) warned the public from returning calls from unknown numbers because it could be individuals operating a scam called the “one-ring phone scam”.


According to the PNP-ACG, the one-ring phone scam is known as the “one ring and cut” or “wangiri” scam. Wan means “one” and giri means “hang up”in Japanese.  


Here’s how the scam works: A user will receive a call from an unknown number and the phone usually rings once then suddenly stops. 


PNP-ACG explained that fraudsters typically use an autodialer to make mass calls. They deliberately allow the phone to ring only once and immediately disconnect from the call after. The recipient will then receive a missed call notification, which may prompt them to call back the unknown number.


However, if the user returns the call, they would be charged hefty fees.


What can be done to protect yourself from being a victim of the one-ring phone scam? Here are some important tips and reminders.


Block unknown numbers


Stay alert when receiving phone calls from unknown numbers. If you’ve been receiving multiple calls from strangers, the best way to deal with them is to hit the block button so the cybercriminals can never contact you again.


Use an app that could filter unknown calls and text messages


Do you know that there’s a mobile application called Truecaller which can help you identify and block spam calls or messages? You can also use this app to search for unknown numbers and block unknown phone numbers.


Report the incident immediately


Contact your bank immediately if your account is compromised and request for account or card deactivation. You may also report the incident to relevant authorities so they can provide assistance on your situation.


With the alarming increase of one-ring phone scam in recent months, it is important for the public to identify this scam and protect themselves from getting victimized. Be #Cybersafe!