Don’t Fall For These Scams

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The following is a guest post. Enjoy!

Don’t Fall For These Scams
I consider myself to be a pretty trusting individual, but the sad fact of life is that there are a lot of individuals out there trying to scam and defraud you.  Below is a list of the most common scams in the United States right now according to the FBI, and what you can look out for to protect yourself.

Telemarketing Scams

There are a wide range of telemarketing scams going on right now.  Most of them are typical sales pitches, but most require payment prior to actually even hearing what you “win” or are going to get.  They may even be offers for credit cards or other financial products, but may require some type of upfront payment.  The bottom line is never give anyone payment over the phone before services are rendered.



Identity Theft

Identity theft is when someone steals your personal information and uses it to perform fraud or other criminal acts.  Many times, your identity will be stolen to open a line of credit, which is then used to purchase things.  The victim is on the hook for the debt, and the thief gets away.  To protect yourself, never give out your personal information, and immediately report any suspicious activity on your bank statements.  Also, make sure that when you throw away important papers, you are shredding them and not just putting them in the trash. 

Advanced Fee Scams

Advanced fee scammers are cons where the individual or company requests a fee in advance of some promised service.  Usually, the promise is something of greater value.  For example, there have been companies promising car insurance comparison and getting you the lowest price.  However, after paying for the comparison service, the company just disappears and you are out of the money you paid up front.

To protect yourself from this, make sure you know the business you’re dealing with is reputable, and that you fully understand the agreement you are getting into.  Be wary of dealing with people you’ve just met, or are online and you can’t verify them for sure.  A good resource for this is the Better Business Bureau, which can help you identify legitimate and illegitimate organizations.  

How about you all? Have you ever been a victim of any of these scam artists? If so, what happened? If not, what steps do you take to protect yourself? 

Share your experiences by commenting below!

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    1. I've been lucky enough to avoid these kinds of scams, well as far as I know anyway. With something like identity theft I'm sure you can be a victim and not realize it for a long time. That's why it's important to keep tabs on your credit score. If something weird shows up, you can deal with it right away.
      My recent post Top Canadian Personal Finance Blogs

    2. I get emails every week saying the person has won a lottery and will share it with me if I send them money. It amazes me that people will fall for this stuff, but I remember a 20/20 special showing how people lost all their life savings to these scams. It is sad.

      • I get those same emails James! The ones that sort of scare me are the emails that look EXACTLY like a legit email from Bank of America (which I use). To someone that isn't on the look-out, your information could be compromised very quickly.

    3. I have always been really careful with anything I pursue. Like you have shown, there are a lot of false messages out there. I feel for those who don't have the resources to avoid things like this.

    4. Thankfully I haven't dealt with these kinds of scams. 🙂 I really suspicious, so it would take a lot of dedication for somebody to scam me; unless it was a friend who screwed me over.

      My recent post Tell Me How To Spend My Money #5

    5. Julie @ Freedom 48 says:

      A great warning for your readers! Despite being warned about these scams I think some people still fall for them because they're caught off guard. When you're put on the spot and don't have time to think things through… it's easy to fall for it. Sadly.
      My recent post 10 Reasons to Use a Mortgage & Insurance Broker

    6. Deborah Anderson says:

      It would be nice to think that people don’t fall for these scams, but there is necessity in warning people. It amazes me at how trusting people can be, to their own detriment. But, then, I think sometimes people don’t realize the ramifications of potential actions or non-actions. Hence, the usefulness of your post, here.

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