- How the Apple Support Scam Works
- Red Flags of the Apple Support Scam Call
- How to Beat the Apple Support Scam
- Have You Fallen for the Apple Support Scam?
- 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.
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.
Red Flags 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.
How to Beat 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.
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!
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)