Scammers look for ways to take advantage of the innocent, unsuspecting public. Stay informed about common scams and how you can protect yourself.
Thousands of people fall victim to phony phone calls, text messages, and emails from criminals acting as if they are from your bank, your insurance agency, your government, or even your own family.
Staying informed and aware of these criminals and their tactics is the best defense against them.
The criminals make up plausible scenarios to get you to share sensitive information or send them money.
Scammers use current events, new products and services, and major events to create believable stories to persuade you to give them money or give them personal details.
Criminals will try many different types of scams – fraud is not always obvious. Most of these scams are framed around some kind of emergency situation, or demand you to act immediately. These criminals tend to be personable, friendly, and unassuming. Here’s a few examples of recent scam attempts:
These criminals are posing as bank employees and asking questions in an attempt to gain access to your online banking. They will then request you 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.
Keep your data private by watching out for phishing scams – fraudsters use emails or phone calls to appear legitimate and ask for your personal information.
Criminals pose as a technology representative, claiming to be able to fix non-existent computer issues by gaining remote access to devices and sensitive information.
A scammer poses as a panicked grandchild or a relative struggling to pay an emergency, such as a hospital bill, bail money, or needing to leave a foreign country. They will often ask you not to 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