Burner (mobile application)

Discussion in 'Swapmeet Talk' started by KA2FIR, Mar 18, 2018.

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  1. KA2FIR

    KA2FIR Ham Member QRZ Page

    I knew of burner phones but not this app until now. My bet is scammers are using this app.

    Burner is a mobile application for iOS and Android made by Ad Hoc Labs, Inc. that allows users to create temporary disposable phone numbers in the U.S. and Canada.[1] The app allows smartphone users to have a phone number that is anonymous and can be thrown away, for purposes such as online ads, while traveling, for business projects, or for dating profiles.[2] Burner is a product of Ad Hoc Labs, an Atwater Village, Los Angeles-based software startup.[3]

    The application's name is a reference to so-called "burner phones," prepaid mobile phones that are replaced frequently. Burner phones have been used to control costs, reduce contractual obligations, and provide a degree of privacy in mobile phone use. They have been used in popular culture by drug dealers on The Wire, spies on Burn Notice, and agents in Mission: Impossible.[4][5] The company has stated it would comply with law enforcement requests but would require valid search warrants.[6][7]


  2. KC8VWM

    KC8VWM Ham Member QRZ Page

    One way to know you are talking to scammer on the telephone is to ask them off the wall questions about the equipment they are selling.

    For example, if they are selling an HF rig like an FT-2000, TS-480 etc. you might ask them how well it picks up weather satellite signals. Scammers will just tell you it picks up weather satellites just fine. Of course, we all know these radios are not capable of doing this but the scammer doesn't know this.

    Another way is to strike up a friendly conversation about their license. Start a dialogue about how long you have been a ham and describe when you first got your license etc., Then reciprocate and ask them how long they have been a ham and when they first got their license. This reveals "date coded" information that can be verified in the FCC database. Of course, a scammer will typically have absolutely no idea what year a particular call sign was issued, so they will just say they got their license during any year at all.

    Scammers will also often sound "distracted" when they are talking to you on the phone. This is because there's a "delay" in the connection and they won't reply to you right away. The delay exists because they are using a computer to make the phone call (VOIP) while hiding their IP address behind an encrypted server overseas somewhere. Another characteristic the caller is doing this is they will have poor audio quality on the phone. It will sound very much like a bad Skype call with static like elements / artifacts in the audio and strange distortion sounds may appear at times.

    There's some other indicators you are speaking to a scammer on the phone. What are your own experiences / thoughts?
    Last edited: Mar 18, 2018

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