Online Scams

Online Scams & How to Avoid Them

We’ve all been there and we’ve all seen the attempted phishing and online scams that are going around and yet they’re becoming so sophisticated that we are still being fooled by them even today. Whether it’s somebody emailing you telling you that you have a long lost great uncle twice removed who left you a fortune, or it’s somebody who has set up a website that is identical to one that you would regularly shop at just so that you could be scammed, there are always scams out there that people are being fooled by.

As a customer, you don’t generally need to know how a hosted payment gateway works but as a business owner, it’s important that you do so you can avoid your customers being scammed. The last thing that you want to do is fall victim to an online scam, and that’s whether or not you are the person owning the business or you are somebody shopping online. What we’ve put together today is an article that details all of the ways that you could potentially be scammed so that you can learn how to avoid them. 

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  • Investment related scams. If a financial deal sounds like it’s too good to be true, then you’re likely to find that it probably is an opportunity that is low risk and high return and isn’t something that just falls into your lap. In fact, most investments like this are those that are done by luck. If somebody cold calls you to be a part of a share or a mortgage or a Bitcoin currency Plan, then you are likely to think that it’s a scam. If the company that invites you to participate doesn’t have an AFS license or tells you that they don’t need one, then it’s dodgy. Scams, however, can be very hard to spot and they can also feel quite legitimate at times. You can avoid losing your money by making sure that you are doing your research.
  • Catfishing. Falling in love is complicated enough, but when you throw in online dating websites, you are very likely to be catfished. It makes you feel very vulnerable to open up to a stranger that you can’t see or you can’t have a drink with, but often people go online to find dates and to find love because it feels safer. They can hide behind their screen and be whoever they want to be. The problem with this is that so can the other person, and that means that rather than just talking to you and being somebody who’s more outgoing, they are likely using fake pictures to pretend to be somebody else entirely. This scam is something that can end up losing you thousands of dollars because if you fall in love enough and are asked to send money, it’s likely that you will do it. You can report the profile to the website, but the best thing to do is to ensure that you are being vigilant.
  • Remote access scams. These are quite popular right now because the scammer can call you and impersonate somebody from tech support, such as from your Internet provider or your bank, and they’ll try to convince you that the device or account is compromised and that they need you to log in. They’ll remotely access the device and then once you log in, they are able to skim all of your information and potentially all of your money. It’s a very popular scam and it’s one that works, especially for the senior population. If you receive any unsolicited calls from your providers or your bank, the best thing to do is to hang up the call and call the bank or the provider back and find out if the call is legitimate that way.
  • A false billing scam. If you receive an unexpected invoice in your inbox, or you are getting random phone calls that demand payment from you, then you should never automatically assume that it’s legitimate. Scammers will often use false billing to pay fraudulent invoices, and they will use you to do it. You can protect yourself by doing the same thing as you would do previously. Call the company directly to find out whether or not the invoice is legitimate before you start paying anything.
  • Fake website scams. These are not easy to spot, but if a website that you are on doesn’t have an SSL certificate and it doesn’t look as perfect as it did last time you were on that particular website, then there’s every chance that scammers are using this website and will be skimming your details. Always check with the original provider or link that you were provided. Don’t just rely on what Google tells you.

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