If you ever hear this 4-word phrase when you pick up the phone, hang up immediately


Paul Marcarelli is not on the other line. For those wondering who Paul Marcarelli is, just watch any Verizon commercial from the mid-2000s, or any modern day Sprint commercial. He became famous for his six-word catchphrase, “Can you hear me now? Good,” but now a variation of that very phrase is a go-to weapon for phone scammers.

If you receive a call and immediately hear the phrase “Can you hear me?,” hang up. The phrase is used to coax you into saying “yes,” a word that, if said in your voice, is as good as gold for con artists.

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The person on the other end will be recording the call, and would then use the track of you saying “yes” to access your sensitive information. How? The three-letter word is used frequently by companies to confirm account changes, security settings, and purchases, giving the scammer extensive access to your stuff. Also, be extra careful with these 17 everyday items that could easily be hacked.

To avoid these nefarious calls, be wary of unknown or unrecognizable numbers, always keep your personal information private, and don’t be afraid to question the legitimacy of the caller. Although countering back with “Can YOU hear me now?” may seem like the ideal way to really stick it to the scammer, it’s probably best to resist that urge. (And be sure to watch out for these 10 other phone scams.)

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[Source: Los Angeles Times]