In today’s world, new scams are inevitable. The best way to beat them is to know how to spot them before you become a victim. Although scams are always changing, the way we spot them stays the same. Unfortunately, there are always going to be opportunists who want to take advantage of other people. When the pandemic hit and millions of people lost their jobs, employment scams started to rise. The FBI in Jacksonville, Florida alone, reported over $400, 000 in losses due to employment scams. Luckily, we can use these scams to learn from them and make sure you and your loved ones don’t become a victim of scams.
At Anti Fraud News, it is our duty to stay on top of the latest scams so that our readers can stay ahead of the scammers. We’ve reported on all different types of scams from Online Romance Scams to Cryptocurrency scams. But one thing we’ve noticed is that they all have some similarities. And the best way to stay ahead of the scam is to look out for red flags and warning signs.
To help you stay ahead of all types of scams, we’ve put together a list of the top red flags to look out for if you think someone is trying to scam you.
Top Warning Signs Someone Is Trying To Scam You
Whether it’s by phone, email, social media, or text, these are the top warning signs you should look out for if you think you’re being scammed.
1. There Is A Sense Of Urgency
If someone is telling you a story and there is a sense of urgency with which they need you to make a payment, it’s a red flag. For example, you get a phone call that your laptop has been compromised and the technician needs to confirm payment before they can do anything. This is a clear indication that someone is trying to scam you. Any reputable company would not require payment before a service has been performed. If anyone is making you uncomfortable when it comes to asking for a payment to be made, then you have every right to take your business elsewhere.
2. Poor Grammar and Spelling Mistakes
This is likely one of the biggest indicators that someone is trying to scam you when it comes to phishing emails. Always be on the lookout for poor grammar and spelling mistakes. A lot of the time, English is not the first language of the people who are trying to scam you. And usually, the scammer has typed up a fraudulent email in a hurry. This makes it much easier for the scammer to make obvious mistakes. Read some of our tips on how to spot phishing emails.
3. Requests for Payment Via Gift Cards, Cryptocurrency & Wire Transfers
Whether it is a potential online shopping scam or romance scam, an obvious red flag is when the person is asking for a payment to be made in an unusual way. One of the most common red flags in online shopping scams is the method of payment used. The scammer will ask a potential victim to pay using a wire transfer or cryptocurrency. These methods make it easy for the scammer to remain anonymous, and harder for you to ever see your money again. Using a credit card online is one of the only safe methods because there is consumer protection against fraudulent transactions.
4. Bank Password Requests
This may seem like an obvious red flag but under pressure, many people give out their banking passwords under pressure. A common scam is when someone calls you to say they are from the bank and that your bank account has been compromised. The caller then asks for your banking password in order to rectify the situation for you. It’s important to know that a banker would never ask you to divulge that type of information. So, it’s safe to assume that if you receive a call like that then it is likely someone is trying to access your bank account to steal from you.
5. Unsolicited Emails Or Texts With Links
One of the oldest tricks in the books for a scammer is to send an email or text message with an enticing link. The link opens to a website that contains malware that can download viruses directly to your devices. This is a key way for a scammer to access your personal information. If you receive an email or SMS from an unknown contact that contains a link, it is always best not to click on it.
Stay Informed About The Latest Scams
Now that you are aware of the top warning signs that someone is trying to scam you, you can help others avoid scams too. Spread the word and keep checking our blog for the latest on anti-fraud news.