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Scammers constantly update their attempts to commit fraud and theft. Learning about their most recent attempts will help you stay safe. This year, you should watch out for these three scams.
The number of fake websites has skyrocketed over the last few years. To make matters even worse, criminals have gotten very good at creating websites that look legitimate. For instance, a scammer may send you an email that leads to a fake Amazon.com site. The sight looks similar to Amazon’s, but it exists specifically to steal your credit card information or install malware on your computer.
It’s not always easy to spot fake websites. Leave a site immediately if you notice:
Tax time gives criminals ample opportunities to trick people into giving away sensitive information. Some common scams that focus on topics include:
If you suspect that someone is trying to impersonate an IRS agent, contact the IRS by calling 800-366-4484 or visiting the agency’s IRS Impersonation Scam Reporting page. You can also protect yourself from tax identity theft with tools like Identity Guard (read our review).
Spear phishing is similar to standard phishing techniques. With spear phishing, though, scammers make their emails look like they’re intended for you instead of any random person. Spear phishing scams often include emails that look legitimate. If you take a closer look, though, you’ll often find tell-tale signs like:
Criminals will continue to change their strategies as people become more aware of popular scams. Unfortunately, you may get targeted by one of the latest scams that few people know about yet.
Since so many scammers try to commit identity fraud, you may want to use services from a company that focuses on protecting your identity, like Credit Sesame, LifeLock or Identity Guard. Our review compares Lifelock vs. Experian vs. IdentityGuard so you can get a feel for which company would be best for you.