Don’t fall for the new PayPal text messaging scam
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Don’t fall for the new PayPal text messaging scam

The crooks are at it again. This time, they’re tricking to trick people into sharing their personal information and PayPal login credentials in a new text messaging scam.

So here’s how it works – a text message could arrive on your phone that looks like it’s from PayPal and sounds urgent. It may say something like ‘Due to a recent failed payment request your account has been restricted’ or ‘We have detected unusual activity on your account’ and includes a link to a FAKE PayPal website.

The scammers have setup countless fake PayPal websites that look almost exactly like the real thing. The site will ask you to fill in your username and password. After the login credential are entered, you’ll be shown another phishing page that asks for more personal details such as full name, date of birth, address, and phone number. Keep going and the site even asks for your credit card information. Wow these guys are bold!

The Takeaway

Don’t click on any links sent you over text message, especially those claiming to be from a bank or credit card company. Type the company’s website address into your phone or computer’s browser instead.

Be wary of any communication that conveys a sense of urgency – scammers use fear to get people to fall for their schemes.

Stay safe out there.

 

7 Tips from the FBI to keep you safe this Valentine’s Day
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7 Tips from the FBI to keep you safe this Valentine’s Day

While Valentine’s Day and other opportunities for romance can be exciting, the FBI has issued a warning, that if you’re not careful, this time of year could lead to heartbreak, embarrassment, and financial loss.

This most recent warning from the FBI reminds us that criminals search dating sites, apps, chat rooms, and other social media networking sites attempting to build “relationships” for the sole purpose of getting money or personally identifiable information from their victims. This type of data harvesting is known as “confidence fraud” and losses for last year alone were in the millions.

So, to protect yourself from becoming a victim, the FBI has released the following 7-tips to help us stay safe:

  1. Only use reputable, nationally-recognized dating websites. While scammers may be using these “name brand” sites as well, large dating sites often have better security in place and can minimize your risk of getting scammed by a criminal.
  2. Research photos and profiles of your prospective partner in other online services and be sure to ask questions. Nobody likes a liar.
  3. Never provide your financial information, loan money, or allow your bank accounts to be used for transfers of funds, period. Let me repeat that. Never provide your financial information, loan money, or allow your bank accounts to be used for transfers of funds, period.
  4. Do not allow attempts from someone online to isolate you from family and friends. Usually your friends and family are the voice of reason. Don’t shut them out.
  5. Don’t just blindly believe wild stories of crazy life circumstances, tragedies, family deaths, injuries, or other hardships. Those tactics are designed by criminals to keep your interest and get worried. Don’t fall for it.
  6. If you are planning to meet the person you met online, meet in a public place and let someone know where you will be and what time you should return home.
  7. If you are traveling to a foreign country to meet someone, check the State Department’s Travel Advisories beforehand (http://travel.state.gov/). Also, provide your itinerary to family and friends and if possible, try not to travel alone.

According to the FBI, victims may be hesitant to report being taken advantage of. After all, it’s embarrassing, so it’s important to remember that romance scams can happen to anyone at any time.

Stay safe out there this Valentine’s Day!