The most annoying calls on earth.
Ok, maybe we’re being a little dramatic. But sometimes I feel this way when they call our cell and office phones 5 – 15 times a day! It gets to the point where we don’t want to pick up any calls from non-contacts at all.
Is it a scam or a real service? In most cases, it is a full scam in other cases the original call is illegal but the service is provided on a shallow level. Meaning that you may be grossly overpaying for the service they provide.
What Are Google Scam Calls?
It usually starts with… “Hi please don’t hang up. We’ve tried to contact you numerous times about your Google Business listing. Our records show that your Google Business Listing is not verified or may be suspended. This could cause customers searching for your services to not be able to find your business online. Press 1 to speak to a listing expert to quickly check the status of your business listing. This will only take a few minutes.”
It usually starts with… “Hi please don’t hang up. We’ve tried to contact you numerous times about your Google Business listing. Our records show that your Google Business Listing is not verified or may be suspended. This could cause customers searching for your services to not be able to find your business online. Press 1 to speak to a listing expert to quickly check the status of your business listing. This will only take a few minutes.
How Do We Know It’s A Scam?
Every once in a while we try and speak to an agent to see what information they’ll give up. The conversation usually goes like this:
Google listing scammer: “Hi, this is Ali with Google listing experts. What is your name?”
Adjet Team: “Hi, my name is Christopher.”
Google listing scammer: “Hi Christopher, I’m noticing that your google listing is in some type of pending status. Can you verify the name of your business?”
Adjet Team: “Yes, we are Allen Digital Services” (we give a fake name)
Google listing scammer: “Perfect, it looks like your Google My Business listing has not been claimed or verified. I would recommend our monthly listing service that will list, verify and keep your business at the top of Google Maps”
Adjet Team: “Ok, How much does that cost and how do I make payments”
Google listing scammer: “The cost is $99 per month. If you pay the year upfront you get an 18% discount. We accept wire transfers, Venmo, or Zelle.”
Adjet Team: “I thought that Google My Business Listings were free. Where are you guys located?”
Google listing scammer: “Click…”
This is the typical call center response. As soon as you start asking specific questions they’re gone. They’re mainly looking for easy targets. Don’t be an easy target. If you ever get on the phone with them, ask about where what, and how they operate. Never give any of your personal information. That includes your real name or business name and address.
Just Hang Up
The best thing to do when you receive a Google Listing robocall is to:
- Block the number on your Iphone or Android phone.
- Report it to Google.
- Report the call to DoNotCall.gov
- If you’ve lost money to a scammer report it at ReportFraud.ftc.gov.
How To Stop The Scammers
The easiest way to stop these calls is to use a service like Voip.ms. The idea is to register your number with them. Then set up a simple directory. To reach Tom press “#1”. Ah, the one thing that robocalls can’t do. Press a button. This will single-handedly relieve you and your family from 99% of all robocalls and telemarketers. Voip can accept cell numbers, office lines and home phones.
The cost is minimal depending on how many minutes you spend on the phone. I would also consider asking if your current provider offers a similar service.