According to research, 15,000 shoppers were conned out of more than £11 million over the Christmas period.
Here’s how you can fight back against online scams, as ex-scammers reveals some of their tricks
1. Look out for the padlock on websites. The padlock symbol next to the website’s address is a clear indication that this website is secure, and you can trust that if you put your bank details in, they will be safe. If there isn’t a padlock on a site, don’t put your bank details in.
2. Fake online shops. Fake online shops are common. The best thing to do is to look for online reviews of the site and if possible, find a contact number and give them a call. If there’s no number, it could be a sign that the site isn’t legitimate.
3. Fake emails. There are loads of fake emails out there and most of the time, you can recognise them instantly. However, scammers are getting smarter and they’ll make the email look like it’s coming from a legitimate company called ‘spoofing’ by putting the company’s name in the email and branding to deceive the recipient into clicking on a link in the email.
The best thing to do in this situation is to find the help email on the genuine website and email asking if it’s from them. If it’s not, mark it as spam, block the sender and delete it.
4. Beware of auction sites. On auction sites, like eBay, scammers will claim they’re selling something but in reality, they have nothing to sell and will just take your money. To prevent this, you should look at the seller’s reviews and see the feedback they’ve had. If they have poor or no feedback, avoid that seller.
5. Phishing emails. Phishing emails will focus on tricking you into visiting fake websites and entering personal information or bank details. If an email comes in from an email address you don’t recognise, Google it and see if anyone else has had a similar email from them. If you don’t trust the email, don’t click on anything and just delete it and block them.
The UK’s leading cloud distributor has worked with ex-scammers to create a guide on how to protect yourself from online scams in the January sales.
intY has teamed up with three former scammers to create a comprehensive guide to helping to protect consumers from online scams. Statistics from Action Fraud show that over the Christmas period last year, more than 15,000 shoppers were conned out of more than £11 million. There’s also research that shows that consumers have spent more than £650,000 on online shopping last year.
ntY CEO, Craig Joseph, said,
“The January sales mean that there are loads of bargains out there, especially online. However, this also means that at this time of year people will take advantage of this mentality of cheap deals in January.
“We partner with vendors who supply security services so that people can shop safely online, and these sales have increased recently due to an increasing awareness of online scams. Since seeing this increase, we decided to team up with ex-scammers to ensure people are staying safe online this year, hopefully it makes people more aware of the type of scams there are and how to avoid falling victim to them.”