This week I received an email from Wells Fargo. He warned me of three common types of scams that people often fall victim to as well. Moreover, he has given some tips to protect yourself and your loved ones from those scams. While I’ve heard about all these scams before, I still love receiving the email. Sounds like a great reminder. We know better than to fall for these scams, however, when we’re surprised, we sometimes fall in love with them anyway. So, in case you need the same kind of reminder, I thought I’d pass the message on.
3 types of most common scams
Email Wells Fargo Warn me of these three most common types of scams:
1. Scammer scammed technical support
You receive a call, email, or text message from someone claiming to be part of a legitimate tech company. Then they warn you that there is a problem with your phone, computer, or other device. For example, they say that they have detected a virus on your home computer. Moreover, they offer to help you solve the problem right away.
You may find this fishy. And you must. However, people also easily fall for these scams. People who don’t feel tech-savvy may not recognize a scam right away. Sometimes, you’ve already noticed a problem—like your computer is slowing down—and your brain can’t help but take the leap thinking, “Okay, that might be true.”
Next, a tech support scammer asks you for some information. They may want computer passwords. They may ask you for personal information, such as your Social Security number. Alternatively, they may ask you for a payment to “fix the problem”.
However, there is no problem. If you encounter a problem with your hardware, take it to the appropriate technical support assistants. No one should randomly call you to “alert” you to problems you didn’t know existed. Don’t fall in love with these. Hang up, ignore text, delete email. These people are not there to help you.
2. Romantic negatives
I signed up for a dating site. Or you are on a popular social media site and someone slips into your DMs. Everything seems to be running smoothly. You feel like you’re really starting to make a connection with this person. Then they start asking you for money. If you are blinded by love, you may not realize that they are in it only for money, not for love.
The person may be a catfish. In other words, it may not be the person in their photos or the person you think you are communicating with at all. There are many different versions of the catfish scam. If they start asking you for money, especially quick cash through sites like Venmo, be careful. (Watch any number of episodes of the Catfish show or the movie before the show to get a feel for exactly what this means. They also have plenty of ideas for how to spot Catfish.)
On the other hand, you may encounter the real person. They are really the one in the photos sharing some of their real personal information. However, they will only stay in the relationship as long as they can get money and gifts from you. They are not there for true romance. And since you willingly give them money, they are usually not guilty of any criminal act. So, even though you may have their real contact information, you may not be able to do anything about the scam.
According to Wells Fargo, 1 in 3 people know someone who has been the victim of a romantic cheat. Moreover, older men are the most common culprits of these scams. Of course, it can happen to anyone. Always do your research for potential romantic partners online, trust your intuition, and keep your money in your own accounts.
3. Crooked crook family and friends
You receive a call, text, or email from someone saying they are someone you know or a friend of someone you know. Moreover, they say they are dealing with an emergency situation. As a result, they need you to send money quickly to help them. You love this person and want to help. Perhaps you are afraid for their safety. So, you want to send money…but when you do, you go to someone who isn’t your lover at all. They are only deceiving you. Don’t fall in love with her.
Wells Fargo reports that this is one of the most common scams that falls under the Seniors Financial Abuse category. There are many different ways that seniors can fall victim to money, from their actual family members as well as from strangers. This fraud is one of those. After all, if someone called you and said, “I am a friend of your grandson; they are stuck in a foreign country and need help getting home,” well, wouldn’t you want to help your grandson? Again, anyone can become a victim of these types of scams. However, the elderly are the most common targets.
Tips to prevent becoming a victim of fraud
Wells Fargo sent this email because they offer a certain type of protection for seniors to prevent them from becoming victims of these scams. But they also gave some general advice including:
- Talk to friends and loved ones about all these types of situations. They can help give you a point of view.
- Listen if someone you love warns that you may be a victim of fraud. People don’t particularly like hearing this if they’re part of a romantic con, but it’s important to pay attention.
- Review your funds for fraudulent charges. You may even have a trusted family member or professional who has their eyes set on your accounts.
- Stay informed of the latest tricks.
I would add that it is necessary to pause before responding to any situation. If you pause, you may realize that you don’t have a technical issue that “needs to be fixed.” If you stop, you may realize that you can call your grandchild to see that he is okay. stops.
Have you ever fallen victim to one of those scams? How do you get through that? Share your stories in the comments below to help everyone!
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Catherine Vercello is a professional writer who loves to live a balanced life. She values a good work-life balance. She enjoys balance in her relationships and has worked hard to learn how to balance her finances to allow for a balanced life overall. Although she is only blonde at times, she always strives for perfect balance. She’s excited to share what she’s learned with you and discover more together along the way.