Social media scams are increasing in number. The scams are becoming more intense and reaching more people. This is happening because scammers have evolved their tactics with the rise in technology. They are pretending to be brands or famous people. They also promise things like free gift cards to get people to give them money. This has caused a lot of people to lose money. Some have even lost all their savings.
The number of people using social media is increasing. People are connecting easily with strangers using these platforms. Scammers can easily create fake profiles to spread wrong information and trap people. Scammers mostly use social engineering, phishing, and hacking to scam their victims.
Sadly, there are a lot of people who keep getting scammed repeatedly. Scammers take advantage of the fact that many people don’t use good authentication measures and they also prey on people’s naivety. However, most scam games are psychological, manipulating victims emotionally or psychologically to get what they want.
How to stay safe from social media scams?
Social media is a great way for businesses to connect with customers and build brand loyalty. However, it can also be a place where scammers try to take advantage of people. But if you are careful and look out for warning signs, you can avoid being scammed.
Spotting online shopping scams
Online sellers can be dishonest and try to trick you into buying fake products.
- Make sure to check the seller’s reputation and reviews before buying anything.
- Watch out for aggressive sales tactics or senseless freebies and be especially careful when clicking on shipping notifications or ads.
- Be sure to check the company’s profile before deciding to buy anything based on social media posts.
Protection against phishing link scams
- Always stay wary of social media direct messages offering free coupons or discounts for groceries, clothing, or services as they may be designed to steal your login credentials and money.
- Stay updated on the common signs of phishing attacks and other types of cybercrime.
- Always check if the URL is legitimate before entering your credentials.
How to be wary of lottery scams
- Do your research before signing up for an online lottery as many online lotteries use social media for announcing new jackpots, but they may not run the lottery. They can trick the victim into paying a fee for receiving the prize money.
- Beware of people who try to force you to buy lottery tickets with social proof or offers that seem too good to be true.
How to avoid investment scams
- Be careful when you see financial offers online. If you are not sure, talk to a professional advisor before investing.
- Never send money or share personal information with someone you do not know well.
- High investment returns, unrealistic selling deadlines, and unrealistically short closing dates are some warning signs to look out for.
- Research and ensure that the investment opportunity is legitimate.
Detecting job scams
- Research the employer, check out the company’s website, and make sure the contact information matches what is listed in the ad or employment letter.
- See if others have had previous experience working with the organization.
- Try to meet in person before committing to anything.
- It can be a scam if you’re asked to pay an upfront fee to be considered for a job. Do not pay until you get the job and receive your salary.
Uncovering fake news
- You should be aware of how misinformation propagates online and stay informed about current events in your community.
- Do not share any links that you do not trust. Do not forward or post any news without confirmation from a legitimate source.
- Check the headlines and graphics and trust only those sources that you know, like prominent news organizations or research websites.
- Bad grammar or spelling mistakes can indicate that the news is fake.
How to not fall victim to cryptocurrency scams
- Before investing in cryptocurrencies, research well and only invest with reputable companies.
- Store your cryptocurrencies using a verified online exchange.
- Do not trust random social media messages and links to buy cryptocurrencies.
- Beware of unrealistic investment returns in crypto investments.
- Your crypto wallet’s private key must not be shared with anyone.
Social media is a powerful tool for businesses of all sizes. However, it can also be used by scammers to steal personal information or money from customers. Scammers are now using more sophisticated methods, such as fake NFTs and fake portals that sell cryptocurrencies. They are also taking advantage of people’s financial difficulties caused by the pandemic. To stay safe, businesses and individuals should follow the best social media practices and tips as discussed above.