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Experts warn of phone scammers using clever new tricks this holiday season

Experts warn of phone scammers using clever new tricks this holiday season

You'll want to be wary of these new scams.

The festive season can often be laden with pitfalls - perhaps you forgot to buy your in-laws a gift this year, or you burned your roast potatoes on Christmas Day.

But there's a more serious problem you might run into - a festive scam.

Experts are warning against all the clever tricks scammers are using to lure you into their trap - including AI (artificial intelligence) scams that might seem all too real.

AI can seem like a lot of fun - particularly with the new trend of asking it to envision what the 'average person' for something looks like, such as the classic person for each common job - but there's also a dark side.

Calvin Chan Wai Meng / Getty

There's a rising trend for using AI to trick you out of your hard-earned money, with scammers “using audio and video effects to mimic a loved one’s voice”, BBB spokeswoman Celia Surridge told CBS News.

It's kind of terrifying - the idea of picking up the phone and having the voice of your sister/dad/friend saying they're in trouble, asking you to send them money. Most of us would immediately do so - but we'd then accidentally be lining the pockets of a scammer.

According to CBS News, the FBI warns against answering calls from unknown numbers, and urges us to verify anything with other family members. If something sounds off, it probably is - so it's worth checking it out before you share any personal information.

Another scam involves a new wave of automated calls pretending to be consumer giants such as Amazon, Apple and Visa, to scare shoppers about expensive fake purchases in order to access their bank account information.

Bill Hinton / Getty

The scam-ee might receive a phone call alluding to a large purchase for an expensive gadget, such as a new iPhone 15 or a MacBook Pro, prompting you to speak to a representative if the order was not placed.

From there, scammers will try to hijack credit or debit card details, bank account information or Amazon accounts to score as much cash as possible.

To keep yourself safe, go through the official channels to contact the company, to see if you really did make a purchase.

Scammers will likely try to panic you into handing over your details, but remember - you can absolutely take a beat to figure out if something is suspect or not.

Featured Image Credit: Credit: boonchai wedmakawand / Tero Vesalainen Getty