Lots of people would love to be able to work from home and get well paid, enabling them to organise their work life to fit in with other commitments. But the scammers know this and offer home working jobs which don’t exist. They make money by requiring an up-front payment for registration or postage or insurance or a subscription.
2. Pay for Followers
Many people want more twitter followers for their personal or business accounts and lots of scammers offer such a service. Some just take money and give nothing but others do provide more followers. However these turn out to be poor quality or fake followers that son disappear.
Plus, you put your Twitter reputation at risk and may end up banned by Twitter for engaging in spam exercises.
3. Fake Links
There are endless tweets exhorting you to click a link to see a life changing video or solve some problem in your life or win the lottery etc. Don’t click on a link unless you know what it’s for. Many of these fake links are simply because the poster gets paid for each click but many are malicious.
4. The Twitter Phishing Scam
There are many tricks used in phishing tweets including fake sign-on pages, fake games and quizzes that ask for information that can be used by a scammer e.g. your mother’s maiden name, pet’s name, town of birth etc. Beware giving out any such personal information.
5. Other Money-making Scams
Scammers try to make money out of you. Any public tweets you make become information for potential scams. e.g. you tweet about wanting to go a concert then get a direct message form someone offering tickets to the concert and a story as to why they are available to you cheaply as long as you respond quickly. SCAMS.
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LinkedIn is a business social media network with over 500 million members. LinkedIn profiles show a lot about you that is of use to scammers. If scammers find a way to connect with you, they have an easy way to send you email and generally people are more trusting on LinkedIn than other social media networks.
There are two common types of scams that involve LinkedIn.
Emails that appear to have come from LinkedIn. Fraudsters ask the recipient to click a link within the email to accept the invitation or to view the sender’s LinkedIn profile. The links within these emails are often to another website and these may be scam sites ready to download malicious software to your computer.
Requests coming from LinkedIn members. The fraudster creates a LinkedIn account. With the fake profile, the fraudster can then send LinkedIn connection requests. These invitations arrive in the LinkedIn inbox, which makes the request look less suspicious, especially if the criminal has been successful in connecting with a few other people that you may know or who may be on your contact list.
Pointers to a Scam
The sender has very few connections
The sender’s profile is mostly blank
There are numerous misspellings and grammatical errors
The photo is not of a person but is a graphic or a logo or something meaningless
The sender’s job title typically makes them an executive at a bank or other financial institution
If you accept a connection request from one of these scammers, the only value is that it makes their profile look more legitimate as it now has a larger number of connections . But what the scammer wants is to talk with you online, pull you into their fraudulent world and steal from you.
If you regret having agreed to a connection, you can block it and if there is evidence of fraud then pass that on to the LinkedIn authorities so they can stop the account.
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Many scammers try to take advantage of holidays, events or anything in the news and as it’s Valentine’s Day soon, currently they go for that.
Scam #1: Valentine’s Day E-Card
There’s always lots of ads for electronic cards (e-cards) and especially around public holidays. If you want to try sending such cards – it’s better to find a website yourself rather than clicking on an advert.
If you receive what seems to be a Valentine’s e-card then be careful as many are created by scammers and sent out by the million. Rather than clicking the link to see the e-card – hover your cursor over the link and see if it does link to the website you expect. If it does then go to the website (do not click the link) and see if there is a card waiting for you. This doesn’t guarantee the e-card is safe but does exclude most forms of the scam.
Scam #2: Valentine’s Gift Cards
A Valentine’s gift card may seem a good idea and the adverts try to convince you they are the safest way to please someone.
But many are scams so beware inputting any confidential details and paying online. Make sure the site is a reputable one.
Scam #3: Buying Flowers Online
If you look on the Internet there are many choices of flower shop offering to deliver the perfect Valentine’s day surprise, but there are also pop up scam flower shops. Many offer beautiful bouquets at amazing prices (photos copied from a legitimate site of course) and some are taken in by this.
Always pick a reputable seller – preferably with well-known bricks and mortar branches around the country or at least one that has been around for some time and built a good reputation.
Scam #4. Online Dating
For some, this is a time to turn to online dating to look for the right partner. There is a huge array of websites and APPS offering to find your Mr Right or Miss Right, but there are also many new such sites and APPS appearing all of the time. Many of these are legitimate and do a good job but some are scam sites simply looking for confidential information and your credit card details.
Choose a site or APP that has a good reputation rather than a bargain offer.
Once in the world of online dating there are many scammers who post fake profiles and try to hook up with a number of people. They create very appealing profiles but their intention is to form a bond very quickly then start to get money from you – maybe a small gift or help to pay translation costs or money to visit you.
These people will likely research you online by looking at any profiles and posts on social media so they can see what you would like and use that to entice you further into a relationship.
If someone you have never met professes undying love for you then it’s going to be a scam.
Scam #5. Social Media Posts
Posting romantic moments on social media is very popular this time of year – but be careful before you click on any poems, letters , quizzes, surveys etc. directed to you on social media.
APPS on Facebook and other sites are not necessarily as safe as you expect, especially not just because they are about romance.
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The Fightback Ninja has created the Scumbag Awards 2017 for the scammers and spammers who make our lives miserable through theft of money, time and even identity.
Each week, the Fightback Ninja will select and publicise one or more categories of scam or spam and a list of contenders for the award. You pick the winner by voting online and the awards will be announced in July.
May 2017, this stopped several hospitals, doctors surgeries and much more for days before it was stopped.
This nasty piece of work encrypts your files and they cannot be decrypted by anyone else plus it deletes any backups. Very common through 2016
This targeted specific computer games and charged $500 in bitcoins for the decryption key. In mid-2016 the developers shutdown the ransomware and published the master decryption key and just the word ‘Sorry’
Category: Holiday Scams
This company specialised in setting up fake websites offering holidays in the Canaries. A new website each month using the same photos and offers pulled in a lot of people who paid but didn’t get a holiday and often were out of pocket further on flights that couldn’t be cancelled last minute.
The Vistafun Ryanair Scam
Vistafun used the lure of £250 Ryanair vouchers to trick people into signing up for a subscription to their service. There were no vouchers and Ryanair had nothing to do with the scam.
Thieves use stolen credit cards to buy airline tickets and then cancel them, in order to get a flight credit and a confirmation number. They then sell these online on sites such as Craigslist or Gumtree.
Walkers Crisps 2016 Competition Scam
Not strictly a holiday scam as it was a competition but the Marketing people at Walkers outdid themselves with this nasty cheating piece of Marketing that backfired as it angered many previously loyal customers.
We’ve all had hundreds of cold calls about PPI (payment protection insurance) and this has been going on for years. Millions of people have had their PPI cost refunded by the banks, credit companies and 3rd party brokers who have had to pay back over £26 billion so far.
Category: Dating and Romance
1. Online Dating
There are countless people looking for love, romance and commitment and scammers think these people are easy marks. Numerous scammers spend their days pretending to be in love with various people and building a relationship to the point where they ask for money and sometimes get it.
2. The Fake Military Personnel Scam
This follows the usual path of fake dating online leading to the fake military man asking for money to get leave or to visit the person.
Once someone has been scammed, they are labelled as easy prey and some scammers will approach them with a new story and offer help. There are fake investigators offering to find the original scammer and get the money back and have the perpetrators brought to justice
Category: Biggest Time-Wasters
Lifestyle Survey Calls
Endless calls “I’d like you to answer some simple questions please. It’ll only take 5 minutes”
Scammers know that huge number of people are desperate for a job they can do at home and make some money to improve their lifestyle or just to cope with bills. But it’s always a scam and the victims end up paying for nothing.
On Instagram in particular but also to a lesser degree on Facebook, Twitter and other social media is a scam known as money flipping.
The scammers advertise that they can flip your money – that is to change a small amount into a large amount in hours. Often the offer is to add a zero to your account e.g. change $100 into $1000.
How does the scam work?
People are conned into believing this is possible by photos posted of people who had their money flipped, testimonies of people who’ve made a fortune this way etc.
Of course none of it is possible – it’s just a simple scam to catch greedy people.
You contact the scammer and they tell you to buy a Western Union card or Green Dot Moneypak card or any other pre-paid money card and load it with $100 or $200 or $500 etc. as you wish.
Then to get it flipped into $1,000 or $2,000 or $5,000 etc. you give them the card details so they can multiply your money but instead they simply empty your card into their account and your money is untraceably gone.
A surprisingly large number of people have been caught out by this scam and there are endless scammers trying it.
Instagram and the other social media networks are trying to remove the scammers but as soon as one account is deleted up pops another one.
If something is too good to be true – it almost certainly is a scam.
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