Cell phone owners beware of a credit scheme

People are receiving calls from unknown numbers; then charged after

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – There is a new warning for cell phone users in Massachusetts, Maine and Rhode Island. 22News explains how it could cost you money but it doesn’t have to.

If you have a cell phone, the Better Business Bureau has a warning for you. Cell phone users have been getting calls from an unknown number which hangs up after one ring.

If you call the number of the “missed call,” you’re charged $19.95 for an international call. Area codes from Caribbean countries like the Dominican Republic and Jamaica were reported.

22News spoke with a western Massachusetts native who now lives in Rhode Island. Ashley Brinkmann said she noticed Sunday night that an Antigua and Barbuda number had called her cell phone but didn’t leave a voice mail.

Brinkman did what the Better Business Bureau is recommending all cell phone users do, look up the phone number and don’t call back.

“I thought it was strange because I don’t know anyone who lives in the Caribbean so I just looked at my phone and was just confused by it,” said Brinkman. “I would say be careful who you answer the phone for and if you don’t recognize it, don’t answer it. It’s not worth it.”

Some cell phone owners told 22News they never pick up a number they don’t recognize.

“I use my phone primarily for emergencies,” said Paul Osgood of Suffield, Conn. “I’m only interested in talking to people I know.”

David Kenny of Easthampton said, “I wouldn’t have a cell phone if I didn’t need one these days. I just have them for emergencies and I don’t pick it up if I don’t recognize the number.”

The BBB says you should keep your eye on your cell phone bill and always review monthly statements for unusual fees.

The Better Business Bureau says you should keep your eye on your cell phone bill and always review monthly statements for unusual fees, and that there are several Caribbean area codes that you should watch for.

Below are just a few:

  • Dominican Republic (809)
  • Jamaica (876)
  • British Virgin Islands (284)
  • Grenada (473)
  • Antigua (268)
  • Dominica (767)