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Car Warranty Scams

Car Warranty Scams

As a former car dealer, I want to clearly state: Any unsolicited contact about your expiring car warranty is likely a car warranty scam attempt. Real providers won’t cold contact you.

Scammers spoof local numbers and reference your car details to seem legit. But don’t be fooled—they obtained the data and reused the same script on millions of people.

They target identity theft and bank fraud by pretending to offer renewals, costing Americans billions per year.

Key Takeaways

  • Hang up on all unsolicited warranty calls – they are illegal scam attempts
  • Never provide personal or financial data during cold calls
  • Proactively contact your manufacturer or dealer if interested in real extended coverage
  • Use blocking apps and don’t answer unknown numbers to avoid scams

Common Car Warranty Scam Tactics

While scam methods evolve, three primary variants continue duping vehicle owners:

Robocalls

  • Start with urgent renewal reminder
  • Provide number to “speak with representative”
  • Gather personal details or payment info

Phishing Texts

  • Cite warranty expiration
  • Include links to vehicle protection “deals”
  • Phish for login credentials or bank data

Deceptive Mailers

  • Send fake notifications implying affiliation with dealers/manufacturers
  • Display official-looking docs with persona details
  • Request owners call provided toll-free numbers

These contacts leverage high-pressure tactics, limited-time offers, and vehicle data purchases to seem legitimate. But real providers won’t cold call or mail unprompted offers.

Scope of Car Warranty Scam Problem

StatisticFigureYearSource
FTC complaints217,000+20211, 2
Yearly consumer losses$30+ billion20212, 3
Auto warranty scam calls4.7 billion20212, 3
% encountered scam71%20224
Accelerating call frequency50%+ noticing increase20224
Car Warranty Scam Stats

Sources: [1] FCC, [2] YouMail, [3] AARP, [4] Pindrop

Warning Signs of an Extended Warranty Scam

While scam calls differ, common red flags can help owners avoid renewal ripoffs:

Aggressive Demands

Scammers rush targets fearing deliberation, threatening consequences for not acting immediately. Real businesses avoid such pressure tactics.

Vague Details

Sparse contract specifics or complex exclusions plague scam warranty deals. Verified providers clearly outline coverage terms upfront.

Requests for Data

Seeking personal identification, financial, or login information always indicates fraud attempts. No legitimate business needs your Social Security number or bank data over the phone.

Unknown Contacts

Callers citing unfamiliar phone numbers or company names when asking for payment should raise suspicions. Independently verify each business prior to sharing information.

Protecting Yourself from Warranty Scams

Luckily, the following tips can help vehicle owners prevent extended coverage cons:

Enable Call Blocking Apps

Robocall-blocking programs like Nomorobo leverage crowdsourced scam data to silence likely fraudsters. Enable such features on smartphones and landlines.

Join the National Do Not Call Registry

While scammers frequently ignore registrations, signing up reduces some legal telemarketing calls. But political, nonprofit and debt collection contacts may still occur.

Report Scam Calls to Authorities

Document the phone numbers, companies, and details of any warranty scams you encounter, then report them to the FCC and FTC. These complaints support potential fines and crackdowns.

Carefully Vet Real Coverage

If interested in legit extended warranties, proactively contact your manufacturer or dealer to avoid scams slipping through instead. Ask precise questions, review contracts thoroughly, and only share data with trusted parties.

My Closing Thoughts

While staying vigilant requires some effort, recognizing common car warranty cons saves vehicle owners significant money and headaches.

Don’t let scammers take advantage – know their tricks, safeguard personal details, and buy real protection directly from verified providers.

Sources and References

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Steve Momot - Author

Steve Momot - Author

Steve, a seasoned expert in the automotive industry, formerly held a car dealer license in Florida. With extensive experience spanning across car trading and mechanical work, he founded Autohitch. His mission? To guide both buyers and sellers through the intricate maze of car purchasing, ensuring a seamless and informed experience. Outside of the automotive world, Steve has a passion for fishing and capturing the beauty of nature through photography.

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