With the proliferation of scams flying around the internet these days we wanted to arm you with some information to protect yourself. Scams come in many forms from fishing for your account information (Phishing) to trying to swindle money from you. Here are some things to look for:
If someone sends you an email asking for personal information do not give it out. Your friends and family already know you and they don't need your email account and password. Your ISP or Bank or any other company you deal with on the internet don't need to "verify" your account information. So never give that information in an email.
Here are some sites with information on Phishing and places to report attempts:
- The Anti-Phishing Working Group (APWG)
- The FTC's website on phishing scams
- ShopSlueth Anti-Phishing Resource Guide
- Phishing (on Wikipedia)
If you do any business on the internet you will eventually recieve a scam attempt. For instance, if you try to sell something on Ebay or Craigslist someone will want to by your item but will make a "mistake" and send too much money. They will want the extra back and there will always be some kind of time crunch. They are just trying to get you to send them money before their check bounces.
If you believe someone is trying to scam you contact your local law enforcement.
Here are other resources where you can get information or report scams:
- OnGuardOnline.gov: Avoid Scams
- Internet Fraud Complaint Center
- FTC online complaint form
- FTC toll free hotline: 877-FTC-HELP (877-382-4357)
- Consumer Sentinel/Military (for reports from services members or their families)
- SIIA Software and Content Piracy reporting