7 Credit and Identity Scams to Avoid | CreditShout

7 Credit and Identity Scams to Avoid

By Kevin / February 19, 2009


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Information privacy and security are high priority concerns today with so many threats and scams floating around that are intended to steal your money and your identity. More than 1.2 million internet users were reported to have lost almost a billion dollars in financial losses between the year of 2004 and 2005, according to Gartner Research. A compilation of a few of the scams that are circulating are listed below to protect yourself and your money, as well as your identity.

What are phishing and spoofing scams?

Phishing scams are major scams to steal your personal and financial information by identity thieves. The term “Phishing” comes from the tech world when the ‘f’ gets replaced with ‘ph’ and it is basically what it sounds like. The identity thieves are ‘fishing’ for your valuable information. Some phishing scams fish consumers into going to what you think is legitimate, however, it could be a phony, made up “customer service” website.

“Phishing” or “Spoofing,” are attempted frauds that try to have Internet users believe they are receiving an email from a trusted source or that they are connected to a secure site, when in fact, they are not.

A few of the scams that have been recently reported:

The Jury Duty Scam: This is a fairly new identity theft scam that almost no one even knows about. It could be very dangerous; as it tricks consumers into thinking that they are in legal trouble by being told that they have a warrant out for their arrest for not appearing to jury duty.

Social Security Phishing Scam: The Social Security Administration has announced a phishing scam that is now circulating and attempts to coax victims into giving credit card, banking and Social Security information. It states that if the recipient does not respond to the email they will lose their monthly benefits. Clicking the bogus link will take them to a fake site where their information will be stolen.

IRS Phishing Scam: FBI reported that some e-mails are being sent to notify potential victims of a refund that they would be entitled to receive from the IRS. The bogus link that is included in the phishing email leads to a fake IRS page that is intended to commit financial theft as well as to steal your identity. The IRS simply does not send unsolicited emails, so donít fall for this one.

Nigerian Scam: It is fairly well known that this scam is one that takes advantage of greed in the victims, by promising large sums of money for helping them getting their money to American banks. It is intended to steal your personal and bank account information, as well as your money.

Pre-approved Credit Scam: This scam preys on the consumer that cannot get a credit card because of bad credit. An offer that you are pre-approved for a card after you pay a hefty processing fee will come by email, but after you have input all relevant information, you may be lucky to receive a list of bad credit lenders.

IRS Tax Avoidance Investigation Scam:
Another IRS phishing scam by e-mail attempts to scare victims into believing that they are being investigated by the IRS for not paying their full taxes and tries to get them to open a harmful attachment.

Credit Card Charges Phishing Email: This scam email asks for financial information in response to removing a false charge on your credit card account. Bogus links will take the unsuspecting customer to a fake website where they will have to verify by typing in their credit card numbers, expiration date, security code and personal identification number.

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