Figures have shown that more than half a billion pounds was stolen from customers of British banks in the first half of this year. That’s scary! You can read more about it by clicking here. So lets talk about staying safe and spotting fraud when you see it, what you can do to avoid getting scammed, and, what to do if you have fallen victim to a scam.
How to spot and avoid a scam.
First of all, If the offer sounds too good to be true, then that’s probably the case. Authorised Push Payments (APP) scams are where people are conned into sending money to another account. Usually for a product or service that doesn’t even exist. £145m was stolen in the first half of 2018 and it is very difficult to get your money back after an APP scam. Never pay for upfront for a deal that sounds too good to be true.
Many scammers pose as someone you know or a company you trust. It may be difficult to spot an impostor at times which is why why you should always be vigilant. If you receive a call, email or text asking for money out of the blue, It’s probably a scam. Do not send money or give out any personal information. Don’t trust your caller ID. With today’s technology, it is very easy to fake caller ID information. If you are in doubt, search the company or person they are posing as on your search engine (Google) with the words “review” or “scam” to see what other people have to say about them.
What to do if you have been scammed.
If you live in the UK, you can report the incident if you have fallen victim to a scam, you may be able to get your money back.
The first thing you should do is report the scammer to the Citizens Advice Consumer Service. You can do this online or over the phone. Try to give as much information as you can (dates, names, email addresses etc.)
Then, You should call Action Fraud and report the scam to them. Action Fraud is the national fraud reporting centre. Report it as a crime if they have taken money off you or as a Phishing attempt if they have tried to scam you. It’s easiest if you do it online on a computer.
In short, if you feel like you are being scammed you should:
- Never give out personal information or PIN numbers
- Don’t reply to an email, click on any links or download any attachments
- Do not send money or purchase anything that you have doubts about
- Take control. Do not get rushed into making a decision you will regret
- Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, then it probably isn’t true
I hope you now know how to spot and avoid a scammer and what to do if you do get scammed.
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Stay vigilant, stay safe, do not be a victim.