Identified Scam:

Apple Support Scam: Beware of Callers Impersonating Apple

If you receive a phone call from Apple Support, it could be a scammer attempting to steal your information and access your accounts.


Verified.org
Updated 29 April 2021
Apple Support Scam: Beware of Callers Impersonating Apple
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Identified Scam:

Key Finding

Scammers impersonate Apple Customer Support, calling you about an "issue" with your Apple or iCloud account.


Key Risk

Once you give up your information (e.g., passwords, PINs, credit card information), the scammers may then access your accounts, including bank accounts.

Sections on this page
  1. How the Apple Support Scam Works
  2. How to Beat and Avoid the Apple Support Scam
  3. Example of the Apple Support Scam Call
  4. Have You Fallen for the Apple Support Scam?
  5. Frequently Asked Questions

Apple Support scams can be beaten by simply hanging up the phone. Don't let the fear the caller will try to instill tempt you to give up your information and/or money. You can be confident that the caller is trying to scam you. If you're unsure if it's a scam or not, ask to call them back and ring the official Apple support number. 

How the Apple Support Scam Works

Simply put, scammers are masquerading as helpful support staff in an attempt to help themselves to your personal information. It’s a classic phishing scam setup with a new-age twist. Here's how the Apple Support scam works.

You Receive A Call from “Apple Support”

This scam is tough to tell from the start: Scammers use a trick to have the number they’re calling from show up on your phone as “Apple Support.” The phone may even display the Apple logo when they call. So, when your phone rings, the caller ID doesn’t look suspicious.

You might get a person on the other end, or the call may be a robocall.

Example Call

Hello. We have detected suspicious activities in your iCloud account and your iCloud account has been breached. Before using any Apple device, please contact the Apple Support Advisor. Press 1 to connect to the Apple Support Advisor. Press 2 to listen to this message again, or if you wish to contact us later, please call us on our toll-free number, [number]. Thank you.

You’re Told There’s a Problem

Recent reports on Apple phone scams state that scammers have been saying they’ve detected suspicious activity on your iCloud account or that there’s been an information breach.

Of course, as scams adapt—and as more people learn about this Apple Support scam call—the script may change. But, most likely, the hook will be about some problem or security breach.

They Forward You To “Customer Support”

If you receive a robocall, you’ll be prompted through the phone to connect with customer support. Most typically, you'll need to “Press 1” to speak to someone.

The scammer may also advise you to call a different “Customer Support” number, especially if you let the call go to voicemail.

Or, if you end up speaking with a person directly, they may just begin asking you questions.

They Ask You for Sensitive Information

In the name of your safety, of course!

Once you’re connected to “customer support” in this Apple Support scam, you’ll likely be asked for important details to “confirm your identity” and “confirm your account credentials.”

They may ask you for everything from your birth date and address to your iCloud username and password (sometimes they even ask for your credit card number). These details are very dangerous to give out and could allow the scammer to access any number of your accounts.

Alternatively, the scammer may direct you to visit a website or email to clear up the issue with your account. The website, of course, won't be an official Apple site and will instead be designed to steal your information.

How to Beat and Avoid the Apple Support Scam

Don’t worry—you’re not doomed to this fate, even if you’ve received an Apple Support scam call.

The best options for beating—or altogether avoiding—the scam include:

  • Not answering the call at all
  • Not pressing 1 or following any prompts
  • Not calling the “customer support” line
  • Hanging up once you hear the robocall start or hear the person begin in on the script
  • Never giving up your personal information (including your Apple ID or iCloud login information) over the phone

If your Apple or iCloud account is hacked, log into your account and check which devices have access to your account (within your account settings). All devices that are signed in to your account will show up here.

A real Apple Support agent will never:

  • Ask for your Apple ID password
  • Ask for your iCloud password or credentials
  • Ask for verification codes to provide you support
  • Ask you to enter your information on a non-Apple website

Real Apple Support also involves a two-factor authentication (2FA), which typically involves sending an additional security code for you to enter into your computer or phone.

If someone does hack your iCloud or Apple account, getting past your password and 2FA protection, you'll get an email notification from Apple saying your Apple ID was used to access your account from an unknown browser. Apple won't call you.

Example of Apple email notification
Example Apple notification email.

Advice from Apple

Apple itself is asking customers to screen any call labeled “Apple Support” unless they specifically placed a help request through the company’s website.

The company says that some scammers will use flattery, threats, or even the promise of money or iTunes gift cards to try to goad people into participating. Don’t fall for it!

Example of the Apple Support Scam Call

Again, as more people learn about this scam, scammers will continue to adapt it. But you’ll almost always be advised of a problem or suspicious activity to make you feel vulnerable enough to divulge personal information.

Have You Fallen for the Apple Support Scam?

Even if you’ve already fielded an Apple scam call, it’s not too late to act.

First, you should immediately take care of all accounts and matters that involve the personal information you gave away, including:

  • Changing all passwords connected to your Apple accounts (and any accounts that may have the same password).
  • Alerting your bank of the situation.
  • Freezing or canceling credit cards and debit cards related to your Apple account.

Reporting the problem is a solid second step, which you can do by contacting:

And remember, the best offense is a good defense. You can be proactive about stopping this situation from happening again by:

  • Blocking the number that called you
  • Keeping your Apple device up to date (Apple software updates often include improved security measures)
  • Never giving away any personal information unless you can confirm the person works for Apple (two-factor authentication typically comes into play here)

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I contact Apple about scam calls?

You can contact Apple Support in several ways, including:

Is there a scam involving Apple Support?

Yes. Scammers are calling Apple customers either directly or with robocalls. Either way, the scam aims to convince you there is a breach on your Apple or iCloud account (i.e., someone in another country has accessed it). The scammer will then try to extract personal information, including Apple ID passwords, iCloud credentials, verification codes, and other potentially sensitive information.

Is there an Apple scam email?

Yes. Scammers are also utilizing email to impersonate Apple Support.

Can I receive Apple scam calls even if I don't have an Apple or iCloud account?

Scammers can get sloppy, and you may receive Apple support scam calls even if you don’t have an iPhone. Of course, this should make it all the easier to identify the call as a scam.

How do I stop Apple scam calls?

Unfortunately, it’s difficult to stop the scam from happening to you completely.

You can list your number on the National Do Not Call Registry, which may help alleviate the number of scam and telemarketing calls you receive.

If you have iOS 13 or higher, you can also utilize an app that silences unknown callers and blocks any phone numbers you haven’t previously been in touch with and helps protect you from Apple scam calls.

Still, scammers are nothing if not industrious. Even with all these protections in place, they may still find a way to contact you. Your best bet is to protect yourself from Apple support scams or any other type of scam to remain vigilant.

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