You may not know Vishing, but in some cases, the FTC has your back

By Douglas Schweitzer
December 08, 2008 8:33 AM EST

This was a new one to me when I read about it in Robert McMillan’s "FTC Has a Message for Vishing Victims". Vishing is much like phishing, but instead of urging e-mail recipients to click on a link (to a bogus website) this message instructs the reader to call a telephone number to rectify a problem with your account. The idea is that e-mail recipients, who are now way more attuned to likely phishing scams, will be more likely to respond via a seemingly innocuous telephone call.

The good news is that in some instances the FTC may have been there before you, and if you should take the bait and make the call, you’ll hear a message from the FTC. Part of what you’ll hear is, "The telephone number you have just called has been disconnected because it may have been involved in a scam. That message was a trick."

Part of the FTC’s goal is to educate the public and I think this is a great way to do it. Not only are scams stopped dead in their tracks, but also victims (or near-victims) are made aware of their being duped.