Electronic scams are becoming increasingly convincing and scary 鈥 did you know hackers can even now steal your identity from a picture? Now, following in the footsteps of the cloning Facebook scam and super real Netflix phishing, there鈥檚 a hyper-sophisticated 鈥淐an you hear me?鈥 phone scam that can make you a victim with just one word.

Girl holding smart phone outside

As explained by USA Today, the scam begins with an automated call that starts by naming a reputable business, then goes on to ask if you can hear the message clearly, if you are the home or business owner or anything that will prompt an affirmative answer to escape from your lips. The moment you say 鈥淵es,鈥 however, the scammer behind the call will record your voice, using your affirmation to sign you up for a product or service you never knew about and then demanding payment. If you refuse, the scammer may produce your recorded 鈥測es鈥 response to confirm your purchase agreement. OMFG.

So what can you do to protect yourself from being taken advantage of? First off, don鈥檛 answer calls from numbers you do not know, even if the area code is familiar. Should you happen to answer, do not say 鈥測es,鈥 鈥渙kay,鈥 鈥渟ure鈥 or anything in the affirmative to a call that starts off with a question. Do not press anything, even if you are prompted to, and simply hang up. We repeat: Simply hang up! The Better Business Bureau (BBB) also recommends writing down the phone number and 鈥渇iling a scam report with the BBB Scam Tracker and the Federal Trade Commission鈥榮 Do Not Call List鈥 to help officials stop scammers in their tracks.

As if we didn鈥檛 have enough to worry about!

How do you protect yourself against e-scams? Tweet us @BritandCo.

(h/t USA Today, photo via Getty)