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How To Detect Scam Emails, Guide For College Students
Cyber scams and tricks are very proliferated nowadays. They use emails and text messages to trick their unknowing victims into getting access to their personal information. Other scams are aimed at deceiving people in paying for services they did not acquire or extorting money from clueless individuals.
College students are prone to these types of scams too. They can be harassed and tricked into situations that often lead to financial loss and other bigger problems. Thus, it is important to be aware of the scams, to protect one’s money, identity, and peace of mind.
Common Email Scams You Should Know About
Here are the common scams you should look out for.
Also known as the imitator, scams like this one aim to fool consumers. Scammers imitate legitimate companies asking for personal details, updating accounts, or most of the time a security advisory asking a receiver to click on a link.
How can you prevent yourself from being a victim of such email scams?
– Always check the sender’s email address. Is this the legit email of the company? You can always use Google to verify the official email accounts of different companies.
– Avoid clicking on a link. Instead, hover your mouse over the link to see the preview of the URL’s destination. From here, you can have a better idea of whether this URL is legit or not.
– Threats are something you do not receive from companies you have associated yourself with. Emails that scare you with consequences for failing to reply or respond are clear red flags. When in doubt, call the official phone hotlines of these companies instead.
Too good to be true offers are self-explanatory. They are indeed too good to be true and trusted. Among the most common urgent offering scam emails involves discounts, freebies, or refinancing offers.
How can you spot fake/scam email offers?
– Legitimate companies never spam consumers offering loans, discounts, or refinancing. If you are not familiar with the company name attached to the email, it is safer to delete or mark the email as spam.
– If the loan or financial offer puts you under time pressure, you should do the opposite. Financial transactions are dealt with care and time. Forcing you to react without thinking thoroughly is definitely a flaw to look into.
– False addresses and numbers can be easily identified simply by searching the company name online. If you cannot find the company or if the contact details are not the same, this email is most likely a fraud.
Winning the Lottery
Foreign lottery scams are the most rampant types of email scams. Although common, some people can still fall victim to these types of online tricks. This is a very straightforward scam that often asks for money to be able to access your winnings or to get your information.
How to spot a lottery scam email?
– If you do not join any type of contest, or in this case, the lottery, this is enough reason to believe that the email is a scam.
– If the sender of the email is a person, remember that organizations will never use a personal email to inform you about something as huge as winning the lottery.
– Obvious grammar mistakes and jumbled messages are clear indicators that this email is a fraud.
Although there are legitimate survey websites that pay users who participate in different surveys, there are people who use such websites to scam people. Acquiring the opinion of the public is a popular phishing technique used by scammers to get information from their victims. The most common type of “email survey scams” are usually themed with global warming, political issues, natural disasters and other seemingly normal challenges society experiences.
What are the signs to look for to identify whether a survey email is indeed a scam?
– Questionable email service providers, or emails coming for personal emails addresses claiming to be someone working for a big organization are clear red flags to watch out for.
– If the sender does not know your name, you are most likely receiving a template message that is often used and sent out by scammers to different email addresses at a time. Survey sites and other legitimate websites are more personal when it comes to sending emails to their users or subscribers.
– Asking for payments or enticing you to download or click a link can be quite suspicious too. It would be better to look for the website online, through search engines, instead of clicking a link from a person or email address you are not familiar with.
When dealing with emails, it would be best to always think before you click. Take time to read who the email is from, what the message is about and refrain yourself from clicking or downloading anything unless you have verified the authenticity of the claims expressed in the emails that you receive. This way, you protect yourself from being a victim of these vicious online scammers.
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