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BBB Scam Alert: A Wrong Number Can Lead To A Bad Romance Scam

Better Business Bureau Serving Central Indiana (BBB®) is advising area residents to be wary of unsolicited text messages appearing to come from wrong numbers. 

How the Scam works 

You receive a text message out of the blue from an unknown number, often with a photo of an attractive female attempting to elicit a response from you. These communication attempts often appear to be from a young woman trying to text a friend. They may be a premise to a more sinister “romance scam” attempt, or a way for con artists to simply collect working cell phone numbers for future scam attempts.  

A Fishers, Indiana consumer reported receiving a text message stating, “It’s been a while since you messaged, do you want me yet?” and sent a photo of a woman. The consumer immediately blocked the number and reported the attempt to BBB Serving Central Indiana via Scamtracker.org.

How to spot this scam

Be skeptical. Strangers on the internet can pretend to be anyone. Question motives behind both solicited and unsolicited messages. 

Check for spelling and grammatical errors. While not all scammers have poor grammar, many fraudsters located offshore do. Carefully check over messages and analyze them for any inconsistencies.

Guard personal information and photos. Scammers may try to solicit personal information through methods such as cold calls, text messages or emails. Also remember, any photo uploaded on social media can be stolen and used by a scammer. 

Better Business Bureau recommends individuals who have been scammed via a text message to report the incident immediately to Scamtracker.org, law enforcement and the Federal Trade Commission.

For more information

For additional romance scam resources visit BBB.org/romance. Additionally, victims can report scams, regardless of whether they have lost money, to ScamTracker.org. These reports can help others avoid falling victim to fraud.

If you’ve been the victim of this or a similar scam, report it to BBB Scam Tracker. Your report can help educate other consumers by raising awareness of scammers’ tactics.

Subscribe to BBB’s weekly Scam Alerts. 

The Better Business Bureau has empowered people to find businesses, brands and charities they can trust for over 110 years. In 2021, people turned to BBB more than 200 million times for BBB Business Profiles on 6.3 million businesses and Charity Reports on 25,000 charities, free at BBB.org. Local, independent BBBs can be found across the United States, Canada, and Mexico, including BBB Serving Central Indiana, which was founded in 1916 and serves 46 counties.