Skip to main content

How to Avoid Financial Scamming

Financial scamming has been around for a long time, long before the internet era. However, the internet’s impact has boosted these interactions significantly. Over 400,000 people last year reported being a victim of fraud in this last year.  

If you have been a victim of scamming or fraud, please go to this citizen’s advice site to get help.  

The current problem is that financial scammers are less likely to be tracked down and found. So, the best way to avoid these scams and save your money is to learn how to identify and avoid them.  

tablet and smartphone
It’s harder to locate scammers and fraudsters due to the uses of virtual private networks. 

 

Types of Scams 

There are various types of scams that are employed as tactics to maximise victims. One of the most popular is the use of fake websites, which is largely responsible for most of the victims.  

Different types of scams include: 

  • Email 
  • Fake Sites 
  • Phone Calls 

These scams are tactical in their approach; they target people who don’t fully understand modern technology and leech off them like parasites by tricking them over and over. 

Read Now: 5 Common Cryptocurrency Scams Investors Should Look Out For  

E-mail Scams 

Electronic Mail or E-Mail came to be popular around 1996 when Microsoft released “Internet Mail” using Internet Access. This began the spark to what now is pretty much “outdated” technology compared to what we have. It is still widely used though but in a more professional manner rather than casual communication.  

E-mail scams don’t really have a time origin, but it is most likely they started occurring in the early 2000s. There are two main types of email scams. 

Blackmail: 

Blackmail usually consists of someone claiming they have access to your email. They usually threaten to delete your account if you do not send them money. They can’t do this unless they have your password, however, if they state your password then you should change it immediately.  

Most email scams get your email address from a data breach on a website you may have used your email on. It isn’t a grand hack so there is no need to panic. 

person relaxing
Take a moment to relax and think logically! 

Trickery: 

General trickery usually consists of “lost packages” or “inheritance” from a “family member”. Id cards, documents, and certificates are forged to try and get you to present your name and address. If they were real, it’s likely your family member would contact you directly and on multiple platforms. You would not only get a letter but a phone call, visit or email alongside it.  

For example, a lost package in LA from a undisclosed family member containing a large sum of money is probably fake. Someone who is desperate for money or who may coincidentally have a family member in LA may end up believing it for the sake of blind desperation.  

Fake Sites 

Fake sites usually disguise themselves as major marketing outlets. One of the biggest fake sites is an Amazon replica where you order products, but these products will never arrive because they don’t really exist.  

Fake sites can be hard to detect to someone who is paying more attention to the screen than the address bar (URL) at the top. The URL is an easier way to tell if a site is real or not: Does it have a lock to the left of it? Is the site spelled correctly? If yes to both then congratulations, it is a real website, and you can carry on scrolling. If not, then get off the website immediately.  

There are also pop-ups, which are like mini versions of your browser that come up and advertise something. Sometimes they can even alert you that you have a virus on your device, but you shouldn’t believe these as a browser cannot detect viruses, only your actual anti-virus software can.  

You may accidentally click on one but the best thing to do is exit it straight away. These can come up with the fake sites mentioned above that you don’t necessarily notice until it’s too late.  

It’s better to be safe than sorry. Once you have mastered the art of spotting fake sites you have given yourself protection against their trickery. 

Phone Calls 

Phone calls are the least popular method of scamming but they are still common. They essentially try to gather your information to sell it off so you can be sent these fake emails and fake sites. There isn’t a clear way to tell what is a scam and what isn’t but most likely if “Vodafone” call you up and offer you a bunch of unbelievable deals then it’s fake. As mobile networks like Vodafone typically send these offers through text messages and rarely call. 

Read Now: How To Make Transactions Safely Over The Phone 

Avoiding Scams 

The best way to avoid scams is to make two different email accounts. One for professional mail like transactions, or job boards, and one for anything else. This ensures that all the junk or spam will only be in your throwaway account and won’t clog or bother your main one. You should also make separate passwords for your email account and other sites, since a data breach could lead scammers right to your account.  

Normally, email addresses have an anti-fraud, anti-scam feature that directs all senders who are not verified to go straight to the spam folder to not bother you. The chances of one slipping through the net are low but never 0%.  

secured files
Securing your PC will make it much harder to be infiltrated. It is only you who can let them through! 

 

Conclusion 

Hopefully, these have helped you identify scams, what they accompany and how to avoid them. It is vital to yourself that you don’t allow yourself to be tricked as it can have severe repercussions depending on what kind of information you give.  

Some can access your computer if you follow the rabbit hole too deep, some might forge your bank card, or even mess with you some other way.  

Don’t allow them to win, avoid them and try and report them if you can. If they send you a bitcoin address for you to “pay them in Bitcoin” then report it.  

Good luck out there, and these skills will stop you worrying about being tricked on these platforms again. 

If you need any further help with anything finance related, whether it’s NFTs, cryptocurrency, or investments then feel free to look at our previous articles, or contact us here at Count today. 

Start with Count today

Signing up for Count is easy. We think once you experience truly stress-free financial processes, you won’t want to go back.