The internet has become such a widespread and used service over the years and helped many people start businesses and make an honest living. But with every good thing, you will always find something bad looming behind it. And that is where the online scammers came to be. Many people have fallen prey to online scams; some malicious actors who are always looking to steal or illegally access your personal data.
You realize that criminal minds have also evolved to the point that they can now pry further into our private lives than before, our homes and workplaces included. Attack tactics have evolved with time and now you find that they are slowly moving from the traditional attack vendors like the use of malicious software and other vulnerabilities using apps and programs to the ingenious phishing scams. These phishing scams can be deployed from literally anywhere in the world which also makes it pretty difficult for the justice systems to catch up with most of them in time.
A report by the Federal Trade Commission found that it was the Millennials who were more prone to these types of attacks compared to the senior. With about 40% of adults between the age 20-29 reporting having fallen victims of fraud and lost a lot of money in the process as well. Even so, here are some ways scammers are now using the social media to conduct their criminal activities.
1. Phishing email scams
Many studies have found that about one-third of all security incidences usually start with phishing emails or even malicious attachments that have been sent to company employees. The phishing scams have continued to evolve with time and are more of a significant online threat now than they were before. Phishing attacks are based on communications made on social media of via emails where the cyber criminals send the users emails/messages while trying to trick the unsuspecting users to provide them with their sensitive data and valuable information. In some cases, the cyber attackers can even use phishing to spread data and financial stealing malware.
2. The Nigerian scam
This scamming method might be one of the oldest and perhaps popular internet scams that were used by a member of the Nigerian family to trick different people. Also known as the “Nigerian 419,” it was given this name to represent the portion of the Nigerian Criminal Code that banned the practice.
It usually involves an emotional letter, email, social networking message, or text coming from the scammer (usually a woman) who is always looking for some unlucky soul to help her retrieve some large sum of money from the bank by paying a small fee for the paperwork. You will only find yourself sending transactions and transfer fees and end up being broke.
3. Credit card scam or bank loan
Sometimes people get attracted by “too good to be true” bank offers which might guarantee large sums of money that have already been pre-approved. In such situations, you need to ask yourself how a bank can even do that without analyzing of assessing your financial situation. SCAM! SCAM! SCAM!
4. Lottery Scam
The lottery scam just doesn’t seem to be getting old any time soon. They usually come as email messages telling you that you have won a large sum of money and that you need to pay some small fee in order to claim your prize. At the end of the day, you realize that most people get duped by this scam and lose their money.