Helpful Tips for Fighting Fraud
Fraudsters and scammers seem to be more active than ever before. Awareness of common issues can play an essential role in defending against these attackers. The Normandy Group would like to share the following information from District Attorney, Alexis King:
Five Red Flags of Fraudulent Scams
The scams and fraudulent schemes that come to consumers via email, phone calls and the U.S. Postal Service change all the time. It could be the grandparent scheme, an offer to reduce credit card interest, the offer to sell a time share, the opportunity to be a trade representative for a foreign company wanting to do business in the U.S., or simply the announcement of winning a lottery or prize. The wise approach is to look for commonalities that are included in these schemes. Then, no matter what the approach or offer, you can identify the RED FLAGS that mark it as fraudulent.
RED FLAG #1: They contacted you; you did not contact them!
The email, phone call or mailed letter came out of the blue. Always check out issues by obtaining the phone number of the agency or business making the offer and YOU CALL THEM! Do not call the number they provide in an email or letter.
RED FLAG #2: They want the issue or offer to remain secret and confidential!
You are instructed to tell no one about the offer, prize or steps you need to do in order for the offer to come to fruition.
RED FLAG #3: You must act with urgency and immediacy!
This is an attempt to get you to act before you think things through carefully. While the adrenaline is flowing from the excitement over a windfall or tragedy, which isn’t true, they want you to call and/or send money.
RED FLAG #4: If it sounds too good to be true, it is too good to be true!
That was true 50 years ago; it still is true!
RED FLAG #5: You will need to wire or send money using something like a reloadable money card!
Money that is wired or sent using a money card is, most likely, heading to a crook overseas. Once sent, it is probably gone forever.
General Safety & Information Tips
To check out whether a website is safe and reliable, go to: global.sitesafety.trendmicro.com/index.php
- Type in the URL that you want to check.
Want to find out if the latest phone call or email is a scam?
- Go to: idtheftcenter.org/current-scam-alerts
If you would like to know whether your computer has been infected by a virus or had a Trojan or malicious software installed without your knowledge, you can have an external scan done for free at: housecall.trendmicro.com (You do not need to purchase any of their products; this is a service they offer for free)
Have you heard a story or fact and you’re wondering if it is true? You can check out many crime and ID theft facts at: snopes.com
In search box, type ‘Crime Prevention Tips,’ ‘Criminal Intent,’ ‘Fraud Squad,’ or ‘Warnings’
Here are some great informational websites:
Federal Trade Commission: ftc.gov
Federal Bureau of Investigation: fbi.gov
Internal Revenue Service: irs.gov
Privacy Rights Clearinghouse: privacyrights.org
Identity Theft Center: idtheftcenter.org
Download our free eBook “6 Simple Steps to a More Confident Retirement”: