With the advances in technology and how we share information comes a downside: new financial scams that have already tricked many into giving away personal and financial information. Here at Auto Credit Express, we take the issue of information security extremely seriously and want to help you by giving you some tips on how to protect yourself from scams that can not only rob you of your identity and hard earned money, but also your credit rating as well.
Internet Scams to Watch For
Sadly there are a number of internet scams one can fall victim to these days, and while this list is far from complete and there are many variations of the same theme, this should give you at least an idea of how they are trying to separate you from your money.
E-Mail scams: Known as "Phishing", these are fake e-mails that ask you to either submit personal and financial information for any number of reasons. They may even appear to be from someone you know, asking to help them out of a financial bind. In any case, do NOT send money or information! Do not click on any of the links provided in the email. What you should do is go through the proper contact channels (i.e. not the addresses or links in the email) and verify your accounts.
If there really is a change that needs to be made, you should see the request in your actual account information. If you need further support, use the contact information on the official sites. In regards to phishing scams that seem to be from people you know, just don't do it.
- Fake websites: Yep, we are talking about fake websites that advertise great deals on products and services. You go for the deal and submit payment only to discover that there never was a product, and now you're not only out of the money you paid but also your credit card information as well. This type of scam can even go further with requests from the "site" asking you for more money to cover "additional shipping and handling" costs.
Online auction scams: You put something up for sale. Awesome, it sold! Something weird happens though - it seems that they overpaid you and are now asking for a refund on the difference. You give them the refund only to discover that the check/money order/cashier's check is a fake (surprisingly, you can deposit these checks and they don't get bounce until much later). In these cases, DO NOT send any money back or cash the check.
Instead, go to the bank and tell them that the check you have received may be counterfeit. After that, let the "buyer" (scumbag, more like) know that the bank has seized the check and flagged it as counterfeit and you have given them the contact info. You are no longer involved.
- Fraudulent job listings: Looking for a job? Be careful of who you submit your information to. Always be sure to research the company before submitting anything to them. Watch job postings with numerous grammatical errors or strange information requests. Don't buy it? Don't apply.
In short? Be wary of sending money out to sites that claim you "won" something but require a sizeable check to be cut to "claim it", check the URL carefully before you enter financial information, and don't trust strange princes! Sadly just knowing these scams isn't enough to save you, fraudsters are coming up with new financial scams all the time!
As We See It
Becoming a victim of fraud can range anywhere from being annoying at best to life ruining at worst. If you have been subject to a scam that left your credit in the tank and unable to get a new car, truck or SUV, the team here at Auto Credit Express can help you! We understand that sometimes bad things happen to good people, and we want to get you back on the right track.