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Fraud 2021

Frauds and Scams to Look Out for

There are no shortages of scams and frauds occurring in 2021. To help protect our Members, our Fraud department has compiled tips to identify possible scammers and a list of some fraud trending this year.

Frauds and Scams of 2021

Signs That It’s A Scam

  1. Scammers PRETEND to be from an organization you know.

Scammers often pretend to be contacting you on behalf of the government. They might use a real name, like the Social Security Administration, the IRS, or Medicare, or make up a name that sounds official. Some pretend to be from a business you know, like a utility company, a tech company, or even a charity asking for donations.

They use technology to change the phone number that appears on your caller ID. So the name and number you see might not be real.

  1. Scammers say there’s a PROBLEM or a PRIZE.

They might say you’re in trouble with the government. Or you owe money. Or someone in your family had an emergency. Or that there’s a virus on your computer.

Some scammers say there’s a problem with one of your accounts and that you need to verify some information.

Others will lie and say you won money in a lottery or sweepstakes but have to pay a fee to get it.

  1. Scammers PRESSURE you to act immediately.

Scammers want you to act before you have time to think. If you’re on the phone, they might tell you not to hang up so you can’t check out their story.

They might threaten to arrest you, sue you, take away your driver’s or business license, or deport you. They might say your computer is about to be corrupted.

  1. Scammers tell you to PAY in a specific way.

They often insist that you pay by sending money through a money transfer company or by putting money on a gift card and then giving them the number on the back.

Some will send you a check (that will later turn out to be fake), tell you to deposit it, and then send them money.

Source: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/how-avoid-scam

Romance Fraud

Romance scams, occur when a criminal adopts a fake online identity to gain a victim’s affection and trust. The scammer then uses the illusion of a romantic or close relationship to manipulate and/or steal from the victim.

The criminals who carry out romance scams are experts at what they do and will seem genuine, caring, and believable. Con artists are present on most dating and social media sites.

The scammer’s intention is to establish a relationship as quickly as possible, endear himself to the victim, and gain trust. Scammers may propose marriage and make plans to meet in person, but that will never happen. Eventually, they will ask for money.

Scam artists often say they are in the building and construction industry and are engaged in projects outside the U.S. That makes it easier to avoid meeting in person—and more plausible when they ask for money for a medical emergency or unexpected legal fee.

If someone you meet online needs your bank account information to deposit money, they are most likely using your account to carry out other theft and fraud schemes.

Source: FBI.gov

Elder Fraud

Elder individuals tend to be more trusting and have more savings and assets. It is because of this that there are forms of fraud that specifically target the elderly, categorized as Elder Fraud.

Types of Elder Fraud:

  • Romance scam: Criminals pose as interested romantic partners on social media or dating websites to capitalize on their elderly victims’ desire to find companions.
  • Tech support scam: Criminals pose as technology support representatives and offer to fix non-existent computer issues. The scammers gain remote access to victims’ devices and sensitive information.
  • Grandparent scam: Criminals pose as a relative—usually a child or grandchild—claiming to be in immediate financial need.
  • Government impersonation scam: Criminals pose as government employees and threaten to arrest or prosecute victims unless they agree to provide funds or other payments.
  • Sweepstakes/charity/lottery scam: Criminals claim to work for legitimate charitable organizations to gain victims’ trust. Or they claim their targets have won a foreign lottery or sweepstake, which they can collect for a “fee.”
  • Home repair scam: Criminals appear in person and charge homeowners in advance for home improvement services that they never provide.
  • TV/radio scam: Criminals target potential victims using illegitimate advertisements about legitimate services, such as reverse mortgages or credit repair.
  • Family/caregiver scam: Relatives or acquaintances of the elderly victims take advantage of them or otherwise get their money.

Source: FBI.gov

Amazon Scams

There is no shortage of online shopping during this time period and with that, there are even more scams taking place on the largest retail store, Amazon. These scams and frauds are threats to both the consumer and business owner.

Consumer Threats

  • Phishing scams: This is one someone contacts you and pretends to be a representative of Amazon, offering a discount or asking for more information. Their goal is to gather more information to take your money or your identity. These can be in the form of a text or email and include links with viruses that can retrieve passwords.
  • Email Scams: Remember, Amazon will never ask for your personal details and will not list a customer’s email address or shipping address. Don’t be fooled by an authentic-looking address. Also, Amazon doesn’t ever ask you to login via an email. Even if the email looks legitimate, only logging in directly on Amazon will guarantee your account remains safe.

Seller Threats:

  • Failed Delivery Scam: When a customer says they didn’t receive a package when in fact they did. This can hurt the seller by depleting profits. A simple fix can be using a track-and-trace postage.
  • The Replace and Refund Scam: When a customer asks for a refund and then returns the item, except the item is not the one ordered but a previously purchased or stolen one of the same kind, that has been broken or is old. This scam can be countered by performing a quality test, then attaching a tamper-proof sticker.

(Source: blog.edesk.com)

Signs That It’s A Scam

  1. Scammers PRETEND to be from an organization you know.

Scammers often pretend to be contacting you on behalf of the government. They might use a real name, like the Social Security Administration, the IRS, or Medicare, or make up a name that sounds official. Some pretend to be from a business you know, like a utility company, a tech company, or even a charity asking for donations.

They use technology to change the phone number that appears on your caller ID. So the name and number you see might not be real.

  1. Scammers say there’s a PROBLEM or a PRIZE.

They might say you’re in trouble with the government. Or you owe money. Or someone in your family had an emergency. Or that there’s a virus on your computer.

Some scammers say there’s a problem with one of your accounts and that you need to verify some information.

Others will lie and say you won money in a lottery or sweepstakes but have to pay a fee to get it.

  1. Scammers PRESSURE you to act immediately.

Scammers want you to act before you have time to think. If you’re on the phone, they might tell you not to hang up so you can’t check out their story.

They might threaten to arrest you, sue you, take away your driver’s or business license, or deport you. They might say your computer is about to be corrupted.

  1. Scammers tell you to PAY in a specific way.

They often insist that you pay by sending money through a money transfer company or by putting money on a gift card and then giving them the number on the back.

Some will send you a check (that will later turn out to be fake), tell you to deposit it, and then send them money.

Source: https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/articles/how-avoid-scam

Romance Fraud

Romance scams, occur when a criminal adopts a fake online identity to gain a victim’s affection and trust. The scammer then uses the illusion of a romantic or close relationship to manipulate and/or steal from the victim.

The criminals who carry out romance scams are experts at what they do and will seem genuine, caring, and believable. Con artists are present on most dating and social media sites.

The scammer’s intention is to establish a relationship as quickly as possible, endear himself to the victim, and gain trust. Scammers may propose marriage and make plans to meet in person, but that will never happen. Eventually, they will ask for money.

Scam artists often say they are in the building and construction industry and are engaged in projects outside the U.S. That makes it easier to avoid meeting in person—and more plausible when they ask for money for a medical emergency or unexpected legal fee.

If someone you meet online needs your bank account information to deposit money, they are most likely using your account to carry out other theft and fraud schemes.

Source: FBI.gov

Elder Fraud

Elder individuals tend to be more trusting and have more savings and assets. It is because of this that there are forms of fraud that specifically target the elderly, categorized as Elder Fraud.

Types of Elder Fraud:

  • Romance scam: Criminals pose as interested romantic partners on social media or dating websites to capitalize on their elderly victims’ desire to find companions.
  • Tech support scam: Criminals pose as technology support representatives and offer to fix non-existent computer issues. The scammers gain remote access to victims’ devices and sensitive information.
  • Grandparent scam: Criminals pose as a relative—usually a child or grandchild—claiming to be in immediate financial need.
  • Government impersonation scam: Criminals pose as government employees and threaten to arrest or prosecute victims unless they agree to provide funds or other payments.
  • Sweepstakes/charity/lottery scam: Criminals claim to work for legitimate charitable organizations to gain victims’ trust. Or they claim their targets have won a foreign lottery or sweepstake, which they can collect for a “fee.”
  • Home repair scam: Criminals appear in person and charge homeowners in advance for home improvement services that they never provide.
  • TV/radio scam: Criminals target potential victims using illegitimate advertisements about legitimate services, such as reverse mortgages or credit repair.
  • Family/caregiver scam: Relatives or acquaintances of the elderly victims take advantage of them or otherwise get their money.

Source: FBI.gov

Amazon Scams

There is no shortage of online shopping during this time period and with that, there are even more scams taking place on the largest retail store, Amazon. These scams and frauds are threats to both the consumer and business owner.

Consumer Threats

  • Phishing scams: This is one someone contacts you and pretends to be a representative of Amazon, offering a discount or asking for more information. Their goal is to gather more information to take your money or your identity. These can be in the form of a text or email and include links with viruses that can retrieve passwords.
  • Email Scams: Remember, Amazon will never ask for your personal details and will not list a customer’s email address or shipping address. Don’t be fooled by an authentic-looking address. Also, Amazon doesn’t ever ask you to login via an email. Even if the email looks legitimate, only logging in directly on Amazon will guarantee your account remains safe.

Seller Threats:

  • Failed Delivery Scam: When a customer says they didn’t receive a package when in fact they did. This can hurt the seller by depleting profits. A simple fix can be using a track-and-trace postage.
  • The Replace and Refund Scam: When a customer asks for a refund and then returns the item, except the item is not the one ordered but a previously purchased or stolen one of the same kind, that has been broken or is old. This scam can be countered by performing a quality test, then attaching a tamper-proof sticker.

(Source: blog.edesk.com)

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