|Top Five (5) Ways to Avoid Scams, Identity Theft and Internet Fraud
Every internet user should make themselves aware of the dangers of the internet. We no longer have the excuse of ignorance as a reason for being scammed on the internet with so much information about scams now produced daily. Individuals such as myself find it necessary to continue to provide the public -- be them older internet users or new -- with ways to protect themselves from the heartless scammers who try every day to commit identity theft, phishing, and all other types of internet fraud.
Below are my top five (5) methods of ensuring scammers don't get you, learn how to spot a scam and hold on to your money.
1. Think, Look, Investigate every link you receive in your E-mail before Clicking.
It's no secret that scammers thrive greatly on spamming our emails with Phishing links; links which appear to be on behalf of a real company but are in fact owned by the scammers. Let us be real; it is no longer safe or worth the risk of clicking an email that comes to your inbox without first investigating it. If you are not sure about the legitimacy of a link, what you could do is copy (not click) the link and paste it into Google's search engine and run a quick search. This way you are able to read the short text that comes up in Google about the link, look for words such as scam, internet scams, fraud, phishing. Of course, the number one thing to do is never click on a link that isn't from a site you are familiar with. In closing, most "urgent" emails asking for financial personal information should be instantly suspicious as such real organizations almost never request this unless in person, so always make a call first.
2. Type in Web Addresses manually into your Browser.
Sites that require you to use your personal data --such as banks, social networking sites and others -- should be typed in manually into the web address bar. This is a very safe way as opposed to clicking a link that comes into your E-mail inbox.
3. Use secure Webservers for transactions with your Credit Card, etc.
Always look for "https" (which indicates a secure Web server) rather than "http" when you share sensitive information. To ensure it is "https" check the beginning of the web address in your address bar.
4. Antivirus and Firewalls are Important.
If scammers/phishers can't get you to click on a link, chances are they will try to send you a virus, it's very important to protect yourself. Buy an anti-virus program and firewall program and install, run daily scans and update it regularly. You have no excuse for not protecting yourself since some excellent ones are absolutely free these days.
5. Update yourself
It's important to keep in the know since scammers create different techniques every day to rob individuals. Check anti-scam websites on a regular basis, visit such blogs and forums also.
Finally, from my experience the best way to protect yourself and/or a business from a scam is to remind yourself that there may be scams that are out there which you do not currently know about. Below is my recommendation of a website which will "keep you in the know" about the latest fraud tactics and how to protect yourself and your identity.
Here is a link to Aboutscams Anti-scam website:
And their regularly update blog: