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Financial scam traps: how to protect yourself?

If you want to see what a scam victim looks like, look around. Various people suffer from malicious cyberspace – students, unemployed, businessmen, retirees, and higher education teachers. Scam techniques are becoming more elaborated, scammers are evolving, so we have to take an interest and protect ourselves.

The first step is simple – check your knowledge to avoid falling into the scamming trap.

If you want to see what a scam victim looks like, look around. Various people suffer from malicious cyberspace – students, unemployed, businessmen, retirees, and higher education teachers. Scam techniques are becoming more elaborated, scammers are evolving, so we have to take an interest and protect ourselves.

The first step is simple – check your knowledge to avoid falling into the scamming trap.

The most common scam scheme is to extort money via

Proposing to get rich by investing
Pretending to be a bank representative or a government official
Enticing with really good discounts online
Sending a fake invoice and/or other link

What can scammers take advantage of?

  • Never rush to click on links, attachments, or pictures in suspicious emails or SMS
  • Do not share your passwords with anyone via email, letter, SMS or telephone, even if the scammer introduces himself as a bank employee or a representative of a public authority
  • Remember to periodically update the software on your devices – PCs and mobile devices
  • Any of your personal passwords should be at least eight characters long, including both letters and numbers
  • If possible, use two-factor authentication when connecting to your account
  • Do not share personal information on social networks that could be used to compromise or blackmail you.

What would help to protect yourself better?

  • Restrict the possibilities of card payment online and in foreign countries – activate them only during needed period of time (restrictions can be set and canceled in the mobile app or Internet bank)
  • Set payment limits in the mobile app according to your personal needs
  • At least once a month review the list of completed payment transactions in the mobile app
  • Pay only if you are connected to a secure internet connection (wireless internet access is not secure in a public place)
  • Make electronic payments only using secure websites – make sure that the browser has a lock symbol next to the web address or that the address starts with https://
  • Do not give up to the pressure if you are in a hurry to make an unscheduled payment as soon as possible – do not rush and assess the situation carefully

What to do, if you still gave your money to the scammer?

  1. As soon as possible, inform the bank
  2. Report the short number to the police on 112.
  3. Never contact the scammer by the contacts indicated by him – by letter, SMS or by phone.