Lookout for Scams this Festive Season
As the holidays approach, scammers start to get busier and busier. Criminals take advantage during this time of the year because people become less vigilant and more relaxed, plus yearend bonuses mean people have more money to steal.
Here are five top tips to stay safe during the holiday season...
§ If you get an email or an SMS with a link to a bank, financial service or even SARS – don’t click on it! These messages may say that you need to confirm a payment, refund or banking details, but as soon as you click the link and enter your details they will be stolen.
§ Scammers may send you an email telling you that you qualify for a loan, but first you need to pay the fee upfront. If you are made an offer like this, never believe it!
§ Be careful when giving out your personal details, like your ID number, address and date of birth. Often criminals just want these details so they can open a fraud store or loan account. They will act as an airline, bank or retailer offering you something if you simply confirm certain details.
§ If it is too good to be true then it is probably a scam. Some of the common scams include being informed you’ve won the lottery or won a brand new car, and you need to provide you banking details to claim the prize.
§ At this time of the year people are looking for gifts at great prices, so scammers may set up fraudulent websites to try con people out of their money. When shopping online or applying for a loan, always stick to known brands and rather type the brand or name into the browser than following a link in an email.
If you do think someone has tried to scam you, report it, even if you have no intention of responding. You need to be constantly vigilant and if you’re not confident about an offer or if a request is genuine, always check first.
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