Every year, scammers come up with more and more clever ways to trick you.
We care deeply about safety, which applies not only to job sites and standard operating procedures, but also to the safety and security of our identity, money, and online presence.
We’re rounding up several major scams identified by the Better Business Bureau Scam Tracker, so you’re alert and know what to avoid:
1. Amazon Fake Order Cancellation Emails:
If you receive an unsolicited email from Amazon about canceling an order, it’s very likely the email is a scam. Don’t click on any links in the email, as it may download malicious software or redirect you to a site to try to steal your Amazon login info. If you have recently placed an order, go directly to Amazon.com to check your order status
2. “Can You Hear Me” Calls
When you answer the phone and the caller says “Can you hear me?” and you answer “Yes,” your voice is likely being recorded to be used as a voice signature. Scammers can use your recorded voice to authorize fraudulent charges over the phone.
3. Car Buying
Selling vehicles online can sometimes be a tricky business as well. A scammer will post the vehicle information online, along with photos and contact information, as well as a very low price. When a prospective buyer reaches out, it initially seems like a legitimate deal, supported by more photos and a reasonable explanation of the very low price. But instead of a legal transaction, the scammer will instruct the buyer to purchase prepaid gift cards equal to the amount of the sale, and then ask the buyer to share the codes. The seller promises delivery of the vehicle within a couple of days, but it never happens.
If you know any teenagers, they’re likely one of the 125 million Fortnite players in the world. Because of the enormous amount of users, scammers use Fortnite to steal identities, download malware, or steal money by offering free “V-Bucks,” the in-game currency.
5. Gift Cards
Emails you receive offering to help you check your gift card balances are probably scams. Do not click on any links or click “open” on any attachments or buttons. These are tricks meant to steal your gift card information. If you need to check gift card balances, go directly to the gift card site or call the company. It’s a best practice to use gift cards right away.
6. Home Improvement
Some scammers will go door-to-door offering to help with handyman or home improvement projects. This is especially common after a weather event such as bad flooding, hail storms, etc. They often require a deposit but then never complete any work. If you would like to check out a salesman or company, take their card and research the company through the Better Business Bureau.
Scammers are sending emails posing as Netflix using the subject line “payment declined,” and then asking you to click a link to update credit card information. If you’re a Netflix subscriber, visit your Netflix account directly to check the status of your regular payment.
8. Tech Support
There was an 86 percent increase in losses from tech support scams in 2018 compared with 2017. Scammers will contact you via a phishing email, phone call, pop-up ad, or a locked screen on your phone, providing a number to call to fix it. A tech support company will never initiate unsolicited contact with you.
Protect yourself from these scams by paying close attention to any unsolicited contact, from emails to phone calls to people knocking on your door. Verify links before clicking on them by hovering over them with your mouse and checking out the destination URL. Go directly to the source if you’re not sure of an issue, and check out any companies you haven’t heard of through the Better Business Bureau. Keep your information safe!