A lot of scams that people fall into are internet related. Because of the anonymity that the internet provides to its users, a lot of people create their own scams to lure other internet users to providing them your personal information and money.
When you enter a chat room, you can chat with a lot of people and you will often develop friendships with your chat mates. Eventually, you’ll get comfortable with these people and that’s when potential trouble may arise. They will then start telling you things like they’re associated with these organizations or firms and they need this much money because they can’t cash the check that they currently have. You, on the other hand, will then send the money required on the “spirit of trust.” Be very careful with these types of people because what they are telling you are actually scams. If you’ve experienced this before, don’t worry, you are not alone. There are a lot of people who were in the same situation such as yours.
When you sell at online auctions, there is also the possibility that you can be scammed. For instance, somebody might try to contact you about the item that you are selling. They will tell you that they want to purchase the item but they are either in Nigeria or Toronto so they would have to send you extra money to pay for the shipper and send the item to you. What you do not know is that they will be sending you a fake money order or check. You will be asked to cash it out on the bank, and not on the post office (for money orders) because these criminals know all too well that the postal office has machine that detects if the money order is indeed authentic or not.
A lot of these scams seem to originate from Nigeria. But there is also another scam that originates from London which is in email format. The email would tell you that you’ve won the lottery—either your number or cell phone number was raffled—and in order for them to process your check, you would have to provide them with your personal information including your bank account number. Again, this is a scam.(More information at our website identity theft protection)
If you know the scams that are circulating the internet, then you would be best equipped to prevent it from happening to you. A lot of thieves would still prefer to get your personal information through traditional means rather than doing it online.
Think about this: when you receive a money order, it would take the bank at least a month before they can verify if the money order was fake. And since they’ve already cashed the check in your credit, you will then be the one responsible in returning the funds that was taken from the bank. What if the amount was pretty big and you don’t have enough cash at the moment to pay for it?