AI-Fueled ‘Imposter Scams’ Costing Victims Billions

• Artificial intelligence is being used to turbocharge ‘imposter scams’, an international criminal scheme.
• Scammers are now using AI to replicate the voices of family and children in order to call unsuspecting victims with fake emergencies.
• The Federal Trade Commission has reported that impostor scams accounted for $2.6 billion in losses last year and recommends setting a codeword with kids and family members as a precautionary measure.

AI Turbocharging ‘Imposter Scams’

Artificial intelligence is now turbocharging a multibillion-dollar global criminal scheme known as the “imposter scam”.

Cloning Voices To Call With Fake Emergencies

The initial version of the scheme happens when scammers call or send text messages to unsuspecting people pretending to be someone they know who has a new phone number and a financial emergency. But now, with the help of AI, scammers are cloning the actual voices of friends, family members and even children.

Financial Losses And Precautionary Measures

According to McAfee cybersecurity artificial intelligence report , using three seconds of someone’s recorded voice, AI can accurately replicate anyone’s voice and begin placing calls to unsuspecting victims. The latest numbers from the Federal Trade Commission show impostor scams accounted for $2.6 billion in losses last year.

McAfee recommends people set a codeword with kids, family members, or trusted close friends that only they know, and make a plan to always ask for it if they call, text, or email for help.

25% of adults surveyed globally have experience of an AI voice scam according to McAfee. One in 10 say they have been targeted personally, and 15% say somebody they know has been targeted.

Tips To Avoid Scams

  • Resist pressure to send money immediately
  • Hang up
  • Call or message person supposedly contacted you at known phone number
  • Check if they’re really in trouble
  • Confirm story with trusted person

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