Straight Talk: That voicemail from the boss might be fake – Canton Repository

Better Business Bureau serving Canton Region and Greater West Virginia offers tips and advice for consumers to avoid fraudulent practices.

THE CONCERN Everyone knows to be on the lookout for phony emails, especially at work. Scammers can easily make messages that appear to come from anywhere, from your bosss account to the office printer. But what about voicemail? New voice-mimicking software is now being used by scammers to create convincing voicemail messages.


You get a voicemail from your boss. They are instructing you to wire thousands of dollars to a vendor for a rush project. The request is out of the blue. But its the bosss orders, so you make the transfer.

A few hours later, you see your boss and confirm that you sent the payment. But theres one big problem; your manager has no idea what you are talking about! It turns out that the message was a fake. Scammers used new technology to mimic your bosss voice and create the recording. This voice cloning technology has recently advanced to the place where anyone with the right software can clone a voice from a very small audio sample.

Businesses may be the first places to see this con, but it likely wont stop there. The technology could also be used for emergency scams, which prey on peoples willingness to send money to a friend or relative in need. Also, with the US now in the midst of the 2020 election season, scammers could use the technology to mimic candidates voices and drum up donations.


Secure accounts: Set up multifactor authentication for email logins and other changes in email settings. Be sure to verify changes in information about customers, employees, or vendors.

Train staff: Create a secure culture at your office by training employees on internet security. Make it a policy to confirm all change and payment requests before making a transfer. Dont rely on email or voicemail.

FOR MORE INFORMATION To learn about other kinds of scams, go to If you have been the victim of a scam, make others aware by filing a report on

FOR BBB INFORMATION Visit or call 330-454-9401 to look up a business, file a complaint, write a customer review, read tips, follow us on social media, and more!

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Straight Talk: That voicemail from the boss might be fake - Canton Repository

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