- Never trust a link sent to you by someone you don’t know. By clicking the link you may be taken to a site that may look like your bank or credit card company, but isn’t. One thing a criminal can’t fake is the actual Web site address of a company or bank. Instead of clicking a link in an e-mail, search for the Web address using a search engine to find the real one. Use that to ask the company about the message you received, or call using the number listed on your statements. Mark the real site as a favorite in your browser so that one click brings you there safely every time.
- Never trust an e-mail that asks for your personal or account information (called a phishing scam).
- The smarter scams often contain text warning you against fraud. They do this because many people believe that an e-mail that warns them to be careful must be legitimate.
- Never believe that someone you don’t know is going to give you money. Do not believe a person from another country who just needs you to “help transfer funds” and they need your bank account number to do so. Such scammers promise to give you a huge amount of money for helping them out. The result is an empty bank account.
- If you never entered a lottery, you did not win the lottery.
- Guard your information well. It is better to be rude than to be ripped off, so demand validation, verification, and authentication before giving your information to anyone. If you still feel uneasy, say no or check further.
Source: The Association of Mature American Citizens
- Ohio Attorney General’s Office: 1-800-282-0515
- Internet Crime Complaint Center: 1-877- 628-7674