The internet that we know today showed up for the very first time in the year 1990, when the Swiss firm, CERN laboratories introduced the World Wide Web (WWW) to the world! Since then, there has been tremendous progress made in the world of the internet. However, if we talk about the things that should not have happened, then, it’s the online scams, which have been rising abruptly across all the domains.
Taking this discussion further, here we will talk about some of the biggest online scams prevailing in the world and explore the methods to keep our digital identity safe!
Online Scams So Far
Before we talk about the preventive measures to safeguard our online identity and data, we must be aware of the story so far! Talking about the most recent cases, in the year 2019, there were around 3,800 data breach cases reported globally, which exposed around 4.1 billion records, containing user details, log files and others. Further, these reported breaches are around 54 percent more than for the year 2018, which clearly depicts how serious the situation is! (Source: Norton Security Data Breach Report, 2019)
Such cases not only exposes sensitive information of the users to the world but also risks the reputation of the organization from where the data leaks are reported. Now moving ahead, let’s find out what are some of the common online scams and how we can keep ourselves safe from it.
Fake Credit Reports
Even though it’s well known to the people that credit report is issued once in a period of twelve months, still, there are cases when people fall in the traps of unsanctioned websites that claim to provide a free copy of credit reports. Such websites ask for the Social Security Number (SSN) and Date of Birth, which makes it easy for them to get access to the user’s account. Thus, it’s highly recommended to users to never respond to such websites and verify that one is accessing a legitimate URL, before entering any such personal details.
Pop-Up Security Warnings
This is one of the most common scams, prevailing these days across all the major platforms, i.e. desktop and mobile. It primarily aims to develop fear among the users that their system is infected with a virus and asks them to download their security software. Once the users fall under their trap and install the asked software, the installed software takes control of their system and gives them complete access to all their information. Thus, it’s recommended to have an updated anti-virus software installed in the system, that protects the system from such scams and the phishing attempts.
Next, we have Beneficiary Scams which are quite common these days. In this case, the scammer sends an email to the victim, claiming that they are struck with a big amount and they need someone’s help to facilitate the transfer of funds. However, identifying such scams is easy, check out for the grammar mistakes, spelling mistakes, and email domain.
Besides the above-discussed scams, there are even more scams adding up on the list! Although, there is no way to shorten this growing list of scams, but, by taking the right security measures, we can avoid getting scammed.