GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — The Michigan Department of Attorney General is warning people of an uptick in scams using voice apps like Google Home, Siri and Alexa.
“Smartphones and devices can provide time-saving convenience and assistance, but beware: Voice search apps are vulnerable to misdirection by scammers after your money,” Attorney General Dana Nessel said in a statement.
To avoid a drained bank account or other financial headaches, the Better Business Bureau advises customers to verify phone numbers, use previous bank notes or bills to find a customer service provider and opt for credit card payments.
“A lot of credit card companies, they offer some sort of extra help in that background to fight off those scammers and help you maybe recovery some of that money,” Katie Grevious, marketing and community relations manager for the BBB in Western Michigan, said.
Grevious told News 8 that scammers can manipulate the algorithms that search engines use to have their fake numbers and links pop up, in some cases before the verified company.
“You have to be vigilant, and you have to remember that even though are phones are smart, sometimes we are actually still smarter,” she said. “And so we have to use our own brains to look up those numbers, to verify who we’re talking to and make sure that it is actually associated with the company you meant to contact.”
If you’ve fallen victim to a smartphone voice search, you can file a report with the BBB.