Today, consumers are accosted by over 30 million daily spam calls to their mobile phones. To get a better understanding of the consequences, First Orion conducted its 2016 American Mobile Usage Survey and found more consumers are giving up sensitive data than in last year’s survey.
Over 4% of those surveyed gave away credit card information to a scammer amounting to over 15 million Americans, which is double the number last year. While only 1% gave up social security numbers in 2015, 2.4% did this year, accounting for nearly 10 million US mobile subscribers.
One of the reasons is more people are getting harassed by more scams. Nearly three quarters had received a scam call in 2016, compared to just over 60% in 2015. Nearly 3% of those survey received 10 or more scam calls in the last month, which amounts to over 1.5 billion calls per year. Almost 5% of the total changed their telephone numbers to end the constant harassment, which equates to about 20 million people.
Respondents were divided when it came to assigning blame for these privacy violations and what to do about it:
- 52% considered receiving unwanted calls to their mobile phones to be an annoyance
- 59% of those surveyed do not know their rights when it comes to telemarketers and debt collectors
- Half believed that their phone carrier should be responsible from protecting them from scams
- Two thirds said they would choose a phone carrier that automatically blocked unwanted calls from reaching them over another company that did not
First Orion currently provides major phone carriers, service providers and consumers with PrivacyStar, a one-stop service that identifies and blocks unwanted calls from robocallers and scammers for millions of customers every day. Still, tens of millions more are vulnerable to abuse. PrivacyStar also lets users file complaints with the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) directly when the calls occur. In fact, users of PrivacyStar-powered applications alone filed 31 percent of all call complaints, according to the recent FTC Consumer Sentinel Network Report.
Source: First Orion surveyed 1,000 American adults with mobile phones.