You work hard for your money, and that’s why it’s so important to keep it safe. Unfortunately, phone and internet scams are quite frequent these days. Be on the lookout for these four common scams to keep crooks away from your money and personal information.
Student Loan Repayment Scams
Paying for college tuition and other related expenses is no easy feat these days. If you’ve taken out loans for yourself or your children, it is important to be careful when it comes time to pay back those loans. Sneaky crooks can find information about recent grads and can contact you about your loans while pretending to be the lender. Whether they contact you by phone or email, be sure to call your lender using numbers found on previous statements or their official website. Verify if the information you have been told is correct, and if it’s not, report the fraud to your lender.
IRS Phone Scams
This type of scam is fairly common. IRS imposters often use an automated voice system to call to say that you owe taxes. According to the U.S. government’s website, scammers will often use language that demands a quick payment, contains threats and for payments to made in certain ways, such as a wire transfer. If you get a call like this, you can report the scam to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration or can send a complaint to the FTC.
Free Trial Schemes
Have you ever seen something online that looked too good to be true? Well, it might be. You could see social media posts or receive fishy emails about a free trial for something, such as a weight-loss program, where you only have to pay a small fee for shipping and handling. But as Reader’s Digest points out, there is often a very fine print that comes along with such an offer. This fine print can contain outrageous additional fees that could put a big dent in your bank account each month. Instead, stick to finding deals through legitimate sources.
In today’s online world, be sure to be extra careful about what you do with your personal information. Phishing scams are on the rise as thieves target people through tricky electronic communications. Look out for emails or texts saying your bank account has been breached or an account will be closed if you don’t update your password. The FTC noted that scammers send realistic looking emails asking you to log in to your account, which gives them access to things like your bank accounts and Social Security number. When you get alerts like these, contact your bank or other institution to check if it’s real. If it’s not, you can report the scam to the FTC and ignore further communications from the source.
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