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EXPERTS have warned the public to watch out for a scary phone kidnapping scam designed to panic you out of money.

The worrying new scheme starts with a call seemingly from a relative with their number popping up on your i phone o Android device’s screen.

Alarming call is not what it seems

Alarming call is not what it seemsCredito: Alamy

They’re quickly cut off by a blackmailer who claims to hold your loved one hostage and threatens them.

The criminals say the only way your family member will be returned safely is if you pay ransom money.

It’s a shocking situation that would scare anyone into hasty action.

But it’s actually all a chilling truffa, as MalwareBytes reveals.

Some people have spoken out about receiving such a call on Tic toc.

User Citylivingsouthernragazza said she got one in which she heard the voice of her motherfading away”.

The crook quickly takes over and makes a demand for i soldi.

Some even create some yelling noises in the background to increase the urgency and panic.

It’s all designed to convince the victim to hand over a large amount of cash in as short a time as possible,” MalwareBytes warns.

They usually want you to send money via digital wallets like Venmo or CashApp where they can hide their tracks.

tuttavia, the voices you think you heard from a distressed relatively are not them at all.

What you heard was almost certainly just a recording of a generic voice which is deliberately faded out and taken over by the crook on the other end.

In the heat of the moment, you believe that short vocal or scream belonged to your loved one.

One telltale sign is that the person apparently in danger never stays on the line or makes any conversation.

Similar tricks to these have actually been going on for years and they’re known as virtual kidnapping scams.

In the latest twist, fraudsters go through social media and other websites to get names of family members and phone numbers.

They then use a special technique to make a relative’s name come up on your phone, instead of the real number.

In Citylivingsoutherngirl’s case, the person demanded $1000.

When she said she only had $100, the con artist put the phone down.

She immediately rang her mother’s number back in a panic, to discover she was fine all along.

Tips to avoid falling victim to virtual kidnapping

Fraudsters rely on the treasure trove of information people post on their Instagram, Facebook e altro social media conti.

It’s a good idea to go and lock down your profile or delete anything that gives away too much about locations, names and especially phone numbers.

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You should refrain from posting anything with travel dates and locations, as this can be used to add fake legitimacy into a scammer’s phone call.

You could even have a password with family members which allows you to confirm someone actually is in some kind of serious danger, MalwareBytes recommends.

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