Scammers are always searching for ways to take advantage of innocent, unsuspecting people. Stay up-to-date on common scams and ways to protect yourself.
Every day, thousands of people fall for fraudulent phone calls, text messages, and emails, from criminals pretending to be from your bank, insurance agency, the government, and even family members.
The best defense we have against these criminals is to stay informed and be aware of what they’re doing.
These criminals try to create believable situations to try to convince you to give them sensitive information or money.
Scammers are evolving and taking advantage of major events, new technology, and new products or services, to create believable stories to convince you to give them money or share personal details.
Fraud’s not always obvious – criminals will attempt many different types of scams. The majority of these scams are framed around some sort of emergency, or need you to act quickly. These criminals are often personable, friendly, and unsuspecting. Here are a few examples of timely scam attempts:
These criminals are posing as bank employees, and asking questions in an attempt to access your online banking. The scammers will ask you to provide a confirmation code, allowing them to transfer money directly out of your bank accounts.
Criminals will send a text message pretending to be from your bank’s fraud department, asking you to verify a transaction attempt. Once you reply, the fraudster calls you, saying they need information to reset your account and to provide them a text code you received.
From emails to phone calls, scammers will try to obtain your personal information including Social Security number, passwords, or account information by pretending to be from a legitimate source.
Usernames can be easy for fraudsters to guess, and oftentimes people use the same password for multiple accounts. Use multifactor authentication and a trusted password manager to protect your online accounts.
Criminals pose as a technology representative, and offer to fix non-existent computer issues by gaining remote access to devices and sensitive information.
The scammer poses as a panicked grandchild or family member in need of a large amount of money to pay for an emergency, such as a hospital bill, bail money or needing to leave a foreign country. They often plea for you to not tell anyone, especially the grandchild’s parents.
Scammers pose as someone they’re not and brag about their extravagant lifestyle and how they’ve built their wealth through cryptocurrency, urging you to open an account. They use fake documents to show high returns. Slowly, they’ll encourage you to invest more. When you try to withdraw, your funds disappear leaving you without your hard-earned savings.
Common Scams and Crimes, Federal Bureau of Investigation
Grandparent Scams in the Age of Coronavirus, Federal Trade Commission
COVID-19 vaccines are in the pipeline. Scammers won’t be far behind, Federal Trade Commission