04 Jun

How to Protect Yourself Against Financial Scams

Financial Scams and How to Prevent Them

Financial scams are getting more and more complex and sophisticated and, in turn, more difficult to pick out. When it comes to targeting you online and through mobile devices, scammers are getting better and it’s important for you to recognize what a scam is and how to protect yourself.

Types of Scams

Tactics used by scammers can vary from a knock on your door to an unexpected phone call. Digital communication has opened the door to plenty of ways for scammers to target you and your steal information because they can now reach you by email, phone, and text.

Chances are, you’ve come across common types of scams; winning a free trip, IRS tax scams, and emails saying you’ve won money. Take a look at our list of common scams to protect yourself from them.

While these scams may be convincing, if you follow these rules below, you’ll be able to spot a scam easily and protect yourself against them.

How to Protect Yourself Against Common Financial Scams

These key guidelines will help keep you safe online and have good advice in general to protect yourself and your information.

  • Keep your virus protection software and operating system on your phone and computer up to date to protect against new kinds of scams, viruses, and ransomware.
  • Avoid any unexpected contact. Whether it’s a phone call, letter, email, or a knock on the door, if it’s important a message will be left, or they will reach out again.
  • Never give out personal information. This can be used to access your accounts and steal your identity.
  • Use only secure Wi-Fi connections and never use public Wi-Fi.
  • Make sure any websites you are using are secure. Check to see if the web address starts with HTTPS.
  • If you’re unsure about a company, phone call, or email, a quick Google search will reveal the background and reviews. Oftentimes, scammers will use the same email message and you can easily search phone numbers to see if they are a scam or a legitimate call from a company.

What to Do If You’ve Been A Victim of a Financial Scam

If you think you’ve been a victim of a financial scam, here are the next three steps you need to take immediately.

  • Stop all payments and get in touch with your bank and credit card companies to keep a lookout for suspicious activity.
  • Report the scam immediately on https://www.usa.gov/stop-scams-frauds
  • Check your credit file on free services like Credit Karma monthly to see if you have any credit applications. You can also call the credit companies and warn them that you’ve been a victim or are vulnerable to becoming a victim of fraud.

Beware of follow-up scams. Sometimes after reporting a scam, you might be targeted again by someone who says they can get your money back. Just as before, Google the message, email address or phone number and don’t give out any personal information.

Keep these tips in mind to keep your financial wellbeing safe and secure. If you see suspicious activity on any of your RMLEFCU accounts, contact us immediately at (303) 458-6660.