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Ten Ways to Protect Yourself from Scammers

Millions of people every year become victims of swindlers. They use phones, email, regular mail and the Internet to extract personal information from you. We offer 10 tips from US Federal Trade Commission on how to protect yourself from fraudsters.

Photo: Shutterstock

1. Know who you are dealing with. Try to find the physical address of the seller (not the mailbox) and his phone. Online telephony and other Internet technologies allow fraudsters to easily disguise their location. Look for the name of the company and its website on the Internet and read reviews. If people write about an unpleasant experience with them, you have to decide whether to take the risk.

2. Remember that sending money over the Internet is the same as sending cash. Never transfer money to strangers who claim to be your relatives or friends who want to keep the fact of shipment secret. Swindlers often incline people to send them money, especially abroad, because it is almost impossible to cancel such a transaction or track money.

3. Read your monthly reports. Swindlers steal account information, and then they calculate and commit criminal acts on your behalf. Keep track of your bank and credit reports for debits from your card that you don’t recognize or look suspicious. Call your bank, card issuer or lender if you find transactions that you have not committed.

4. In the event of a disaster, donate money only to well-known charities. Never give money to funds that have come out of nowhere. By this link You can learn more about donations.

5. Talk to your doctor before buying medications or medications. Ask your doctor if there are studies confirming product data, and what are the risks and side effects. Buy only prescription drugs from licensed US pharmacies. Do not risk buying fake, expired or incorrectly signed drugs. By this link You can learn more about the purchase of therapeutic agents.

6. Remember - there are no guarantees in investing. If someone contacts you with a proposal of low-risk and highly profitable investments, refrain. Such fraudsters usually insist on the immediate investment of money, guarantee high profits, promise low or no financial risk, or require you to immediately send cash.

7. Do not transfer money to people you do not know. Never transfer money to online merchants that you have not heard of before, or online sympathizers who ask for money. It is better to deal with trusted sites that you trust. If you are going to make a purchase online, it is better to make it using a high-security credit card. If you are not familiar with the company, but want to buy something from it, enter the name of the company in the search box along with the words “complaints”, “reviews” or “fraud”.

8. Do not agree to collect the check and send money transfer. By law, banks must make checks amounts available over several days, but it may take several weeks to detect a fake check. You are responsible for checks that you collect. If the check is fake, you will be required to return the money to the bank.

9. Do not respond to requests for personal or financial information. It doesn't matter how you received this message, but never provide your personal or financial data. Also do not click on the links and do not call the numbers that are contained in the message.

10. Do not play foreign lottery. Playing foreign lotteries is illegal. Do not believe messages that advertise your high chances of winning the foreign lottery, or reporting that you have already won. The fraudsters will claim to send money to pay for “taxes”, “fees” or “customs duties” before sending you your winnings. If you send money, you lose it.

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