Today, Saturday, November 18, 2017

Common Sense Ways to Avoid Email Scams




Our introduction to the internet has brought about many changes in our lives as well as much advancement. One of the most interesting aspects of the internet has been email. Email gives us the ability to contact someone across the country in minutes as opposed to the days or weeks it took to send a letter through the U.S. mail years ago. As great as email has been, it's also been the source of a lot of spam or internet scams.

Email scams come in a variety of ways. There are, however, some that are more common than others. Internet users that are experienced with this sort of fraud usually recognize it for what it is, but, unfortunately others fall prey to these crooks. Here is a list of some of the most common forms of email scams.

The Nigerian Email Scam- This will consist of an email supposedly from a businessperson or official in Nigeria or another country. They'll state they have an excess amount of money that's temporarily tied up. However, if you send them some money to help them pay "taxes" or fees, they'll offer to send you a large sum of money. If you respond, they'll ask for personal information including your bank account number, stating they need this to transfer the money into your account. If you get one of these emails or something similar, ignore it.

Work-at-Home Scams are very popular as well. You'll get emails offering you big bucks if you do different work-at-home projects including stuffing envelopes, medical claims processing, and craft work, etc. The catch here is that often you're expected to do a lot of work for a little pay or sometimes no pay if they claim your work wasn't "up to their standards". You may also be expected to pay so much money up front before you even start for "supplies, etc." If you're considering one of these companies, check with a lawyer or the Better Business Bureau on the company.

Phishing has become far too well-known. You'll get pop-up messages or emails that look like they're from a legitimate business stating that they're with some online service, bank or internet provider that you may do business with. They'll state you need to update or validate your account information. Don't fall for this scam. They only want to get your personal account information. If in doubt, find some way to contact the company they claim to be representing.

Over check payment scams are ways to get your money if you have something for sale. They'll try to give you some plausible reason why they have to send you more than your selling price and ask you to please send the difference. Once you've sent them the money, you'll find out that the "cashier's check or money order" was counterfeit and you'll be out the money.

These are just a few of the many email scams available. Others involving weight loss, foreign lotteries, cure-all products, debt relief are some that you may get. Be smart and don't succumb to their offers. Instead send a copy of the emails to spam@uce.gov.




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