8 Consumers Scams to Watch Out For In 2022 & 12 Tips to Identify Fraud
The digital age has created a rampant increase in identity theft. In today’s tech-savvy world, everyone should learn how to recognize red flags and remain vigilant. Here are common consumer scams and warning signs that you should watch out for in 2022.
Online Shopping Fraud
Scammers can use fake websites or fake ads to pose as legitimate online sellers. These cybercriminals use the internet’s anonymous nature to swindle unsuspecting shoppers. Typically, they might use sophisticated layouts and designs that appear as genuine online retail stores.
Most of these fake websites offer luxury items at incredibly low prices. Often, you might not receive the item you signed up for. If you do receive the product, the chances are that it will be a knockoff of what you thought you purchased.
Always watch out for retail websites that ask you to use a money order, wire transfer, or pre-loaded money card to complete your payments. You could also check out reviews on social media before purchasing a product online.
Card Identity Fraud
Identity fraud typically involves using a stolen identity to obtain goods or services through deception. Once they get possession of your identity details, fraudsters can open bank accounts, obtain credit cards, take over your existing accounts, or take your mobile phone contracts.
One of the best ways of protecting yourself against identity fraud could be to shred anything that has your name, address or financial details.
Account Takeover Fraud
Cybercriminals also target login credentials that they can use to steal funds or information. Phishing attacks and malware are popular among fraudsters keen on accessing your bank accounts. These attacks often target financial institutions and their clients.
Essentially, fraudsters get personal information like passwords, social security numbers, or credit card numbers from data breaches. Successful account takeovers usually lead to unauthorized shopping from compromised accounts and fraudulent transactions.
With an account takeover, cybercriminals can quickly infiltrate multiple relationships of their victims. As well, they may collaborate and sell stolen identities to the highest bidder on the Dark Web.
Updating your passwords regularly and using password managers can help you minimize the risk of account takeover frauds. Ensure that you use a VPN when you connect to public WiFi networks.
Biometrics are a significant fraud deterrent
Fraudsters focus more on document checks and pay less attention to biometrics. On the other hand, consumers prefer biometrics as a means of authenticating transactions. Businesses can leverage biometric solutions to secure their clients’ information and minimize fraud incidences in 2022.
Social Security Number Theft
Identity theft is rising, and rogue cybercriminals target social security numbers. If criminals compromise your social security number, they might use it to get more information about you. Identity thieves often use your number and good credit to apply for credit in your name.
You will only notice that the fraud has occurred when you receive calls from unknown creditors demanding payments for items you know nothing about. Also, you might notice SSN theft when your creditors turn you down for credit.
Medical Identity Theft
Medical identity theft occurs when criminals steal your personal information and use it to make fraudulent claims to health insurers without your consent. Medical identity theft usually disrupts your medical care.
Employees or external hackers often steal this information and sell personal identifying information. The best protection against identity theft is through monitoring your details constantly. On the other hand, healthcare providers should monitor employees with access to patient data.
Tax Identity Theft
Identity thieves can also steal taxpayers’ identities and use them to file fraudulent returns. Tax identity theft often involves consumer information or stolen social security numbers. Typically, the identity thief will use this information to file a forged tax return before the IRS processes the actual tax refund.
Tax identity scams have become rampant due to paperless e-filling. The victim will identify the fraud long after identity thieves have cashed the refund check or withdrawn it.
Fraudsters keep targeting crypto platforms
Scammers are keen to cash in on the ever-growing digital currency space. Hackers continue to exploit new means of accessing the digital wallets of unsuspecting people.
12 Signs to Identify Fraud/Theft
- An online retailer fails to provide sufficient information regarding privacy, contact details, dispute resolution, and terms and conditions of use. Such retailers might also advertise their products at meager prices.
- Credit cards or credit reports might indicate unfamiliar or unauthorized activity.
- Missing bills or unfamiliar monthly bills.
- Creditors reach out concerning debts that you are unfamiliar with.
- Your insurer denies your medical claim, or your medical bill doesn’t add up.
- You cannot file taxes because someone else has used your name to file the tax return.
- You receive notification that a data breach exposed your personal information.
- You get a two-factor authentication alert.
- Unauthorized withdrawals occur on your bank account
- You stop receiving emails or mails
- You receive rejections for credit applications or insurance claims
- You receive advertisements for expensive items.
Identity fraud has maintained an upward trajectory as fraudsters look to capitalize on increased digitalization. Cybercriminals won’t walk away from the growing pool of targets. Therefore, everyone needs to understand how these frauds occur and take the necessary precautions!
Comprehending the threats and how biometric solutions can help deter sophisticated fraud could make a difference for your business. Contact us to learn more!