Don’t Let Scammers and Cyber Threats Spoil Your Fun
America is finally moving again. Unfortunately, scammers are also moving with the times.
Just as 2020 brought lots of COVID-related scams, this year, scammers are zeroing in on our plans for life after COVID, hoping to trick us out of money, private information, and more. Read on for some scams to avoid and other tips to keep yourself safe while still enjoying the fun of the season.
Steer Clear of Travel Scams
According to Travelocity, 70% of Americans want to start traveling again in the next year, and flights and vacation rentals are filling up fast. Fraud experts are warning of an uptick in scammers impersonating travel agencies or online booking sites to cash in on the travel rush. When the unwitting traveler shows up, the airline or property owner has no record of their booking, or the property isn’t even there! So, don’t jump at an unbelievable fare or vacation spot without doing your homework.
Protect yourself: Beware of emails or sites that might be impersonating legit travel companies and check customer reviews to see if others are reporting scams. Always pay with a credit card so that you can dispute the charges if something goes wrong and get cancellation policies in writing and read them before booking.
Opt-Out of Employment Scams
As the economy gets moving again, scammers are running employment scams aimed at Americans hungry for opportunity. These scams often target personal information, and some involve schemes such as overpayment fraud (sending the “new hires” a fake check and then having them return money out of their own funds before the check bounces).
Protect yourself: Get job offers in writing, don’t pay for equipment or fees or cash checks for the company, and never provide personal information such as your Social Security number until you start the job.
Don’t Get Taken by Moving Scams
Lots of Americans will move this summer, as young adults move out on their own post-COVID and people who can now work remotely relocate to their dream destinations. Unfortunately, moving itself can be a nightmare, as the industry is rife with scams.
Protect yourself: Before hiring a moving company, the Better Business Bureau advises that you check out their customer reviews and complaints, ask to see proof of their license and insurance and get everything in writing. Keep an inventory of your possessions, don’t agree to make a large down payment or full payment in advance.
While identity thieves are taking advantage of these challenging times, you can protect yourself by staying vigilant, especially when asked to provide your personal information. Consider enrolling in an identity theft protection service to help protect against the damaging effects of identity theft. With a little caution and an added layer of protection, you can save yourself a lot of aggravation.
Source: ID Experts