We’ve all found ourselves the targets of scams, whether it’s an email that’s gone to our spam folder asking us to reveal our bank details so we can receive a few million pounds or seemingly personal mail from a Russian bride. We even receive mail that seems to be direct from our service providers and banks but when we look closer we see the spelling and grammar is out of sync.
Now fraudsters have upped their game, they’ve invested heavily in modern technology that allows them to look and sound authentic to the naked eye. As their skills develop, so do those of the internet protection software but at the moment it’s a neck and neck race. Here are just a few to look out for this year.
A visher will ring you using your banks telephone number. They’ll even encourage you to ring your bank back in order to verify who they are. Of course, when you ring your bank, it’s the visher on the line (as they stay on the line all the time but make it sound as if you’ve hung up and redialled) and you are asked security details to verify your identity.
Some of them stop there, they have your details, that’s enough. Others go further turning the Vishing Scam into the Courier Scam. This is when they tell you your bank card has been a victim of fraud and will be sending a courier to pick it up. You know what happens next. This one is easily avoided. Ring your bank but use a different phone or try to ring someone else instead.
The Pension Eraser
There’s a scam that promises you early retirement by claiming to release your pension early. This gives many dreams of a relaxed work free life when the reality is very different. The money can get released but by the time you’ve paid the tax bills and the scammers fees you’ll be lucky to have ten pounds left over and you’ll certainly have nothing for when your real pension age comes.
The New Wonder Stuff
Graphene is labelled the new wonder stuff as it’s a material that many are very excited about (much like the fire retardant multiple capabilities of asbestos in the seventies). Although it is an investable material there is still so much to be learned that scammers are having a field day selling what is essentially fresh air. Beware!
You’ve no doubt received an email from a fake FedEx company alerting you to a package that they want to deliver quickly? These scams are usually easily identifiable by those of us in the UK as the foreign address often gives them away. Now scammers have found a way to impersonate Royal Mail, sending tracking info in an attachment that installs a virus on download. Royal Mail representatives advise that “we don’t send emails with attachments unless a document has been specifically requested by the customer.” Therefore, don’t open them.