Online fraud is a growing problem that targets almost every industry. It includes identity theft, credit card fraud, and other crimes that occur when someone uses your personal information to commit fraud. The problem has grown exponentially over the years because fraudsters have been able to steal personal information from the Internet without fear of retribution.
Fortunately, there are some procedures that you can do to protect yourself from these online scams.
What Is An Online Fraud?
Online fraud, commonly known as internet scams, is the utilization of software or websites to steal the identity or money of a person. Every year, millions of dollars are lost because of these vile activities. Moreover, scams do not select their demographics. They can target anyone. Millennials are more likely to lose money to internet scams than those individuals aged 40 and above. However, older adults tend to lose more money once they get victimized by online fraud.
How Online Thieves Steal Your Information?
- Shopping scams – In this particular method, people will purchase a product from a website. But after they paid, they will never receive the thing they bought. And once they file a complaint, they will not get anything–even a reply.
- Data breaches – A data breach is a security incident in which sensitive, non-public information is accessed, used, or disclosed by an unauthorized person. This usually involves the theft of sensitive data from a computer but can also involve the theft of other devices, such as PDAs or smartphones.
- Phishing – Phishing is a term used to describe fraud that occurs over the Internet. It is a popular method used by scammers to trick people into revealing sensitive information. The premise of phishing is that a clever person tricks you into providing him with your sensitive information, often your login credentials, which are then used to access your bank accounts, email accounts, or other online accounts.
How To Avoid Online Fraud?
- Change passwords – Online thieves repeatedly use stolen credit cards to buy things on the Internet. One of the best ways to protect yourself is to ensure you are using strong passwords that are easy to remember and hard to crack. You can choose a password that uses a combination of upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols. To make your password tougher, you can use a combination of words from the previous sentence in a variety of ways with a total of 12 characters. In addition, you can use a combination of upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and symbols.
- Only use encrypted websites – Fraudsters use the internet to scam you out of your bank account, credit cards, and other valuable information. They use fake websites and credit card numbers to get you to provide money, goods, and services. The best way to avoid this is only to use websites that use encryption to keep your personal information secure. Encryption is a process that scrambles information in data files in such a way that only authorized users can access them. The information is unreadable to anyone who is not authorized to view it.
- Don’t email your account numbers – With the recent string of online scams, scammers are constantly looking for new ways to trick unsuspecting consumers into giving them their bank account or credit card information. While nowadays, scammers are less likely to try to trick you by sending you a fake check or bank statement, they are increasingly using email to trick you into giving them confidential information. Aside from your account numbers, never send your wiring instructions, passwords, and sensitive information.
- Confirm wire transactions – It is prudent that you don’t wire money to people you don’t know. If you are required to wire money, you should call the individual you are going to wire the money to. In this way, you can guarantee that the request is valid. You should also do the same thing even if you are wiring money from your relatives. Both parties should know that there’s a transaction going on.
- Don’t click links from unknown sources – The Internet is a big place, and you’re only going to learn about a certain range of things that you’ll care about. Websites can’t be everywhere, and that’s why you often have to rely on links to find everything you want to know. The problem with links from an unknown source is that they are not guaranteed to be reliable, and they could potentially lead you to a range of scams.