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Fighting Fraud: How to Spot a Scam?

The rise of the digital era has yielded endless advantages to businesses and consumers alike. However, with the opportunities come the risks, and fraud is one of the greatest threats of operating in the online space.

As the internet becomes a more established part of our everyday lives, it’s possible for anyone to be targeted by a scam. Online scams are turning more sophisticated, making it more difficult to decipher genuine threats from helpful information. If an email sounds too good to be true, is probably just that.

To help you stay safe online, we’ve put together five of the most frequent online scams and some key tips to spotting them.

1. Lottery, competition and inheritance schemes

Emails stating that you have won monetary prizes in competitions you did not enter and messages from people overseas claiming that you have inherited money are attempts to obtain your personal details.

2. Phishing emails

One of the most common types of scam are phishing emails. These encourage you to click on a link or attachment and download malicious software, which attacks your device and hacks access to your files.

3. Banking and online account scams

Take extra caution when reading an email from a bank. Many scammers send emails or texts that appear to be sent from your bank, highlighting a problem with your account. Often, they will request a verification of your details to resolve the problem. Never submit your personal details to this email. Instead, call your bank directly to clarify the issue.

4. Charity scams

Scams that take advantage of good-natured individuals often make a special appearance around the holiday season but could be active at any time of the year. Scammers will pretend to work for a charitable cause and may even exploit news of a current crisis.

5. Online shopping scams

As more of us purchase our shopping online, so scams in this area become more prevalent. Scams include faulty products and attempting to sell a product to gain bank details.

The list above only skims the surface of some of the most commonly reported types of scam. Here are some key precautions you can take whenever you’re online to reduce your chances of becoming a scam victim:

  • Emails are the most common scam vehicle. One way to check whether the message is from a reputable source is by checking the URL. Extra characters and misspellings could both point to a suspicious link. If you’re still not sure, treat it as you would any other scam email.
  • Never agree to send money to anyone you have only met online.
  • Never deposit checks that you receive in the mail from an unknown person or business.
  • Never make a financial decision based on a phone call you receive from a person posing as a relative of someone in jail.
  • Never share login credentials with anyone online, no matter what they promise to do for you in return.

At Ria, we are aware of the threat that scams pose to our customers. That’s why we invest in the latest technologies and have a robust compliance system in place, together with a global team of experts, limiting your exposure to money transfer scams.

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