Connect Magazine May/June 2019 - Page 16

Suspect a Scam? Here Are 10 Things You Can Do to Stop Fraud SOURCE: U.S. FEDERAL TRADE COMMISSION YOUR REPORTS HELP THE FTC AND OTHER LAW ENFORCEMENT INVESIGATE SCAMS AND BRING CROOKS TO JUSTICE. 1 or a company you do business with. Don’t send money or 5 give out personal information in response to an unexpected because it’s nearly impossible to get your money back. That’s request – whether it comes as a text, a phone call or an also true for reloadable cards (like MoneyPak or Reloadit) email. and gift cards (like iTunes or Google Play). Government 2 SPOT IMPOSTERS Scammers often pretend to be someone you trust, like a government official, a family member, a charity, in, but some payment methods don’t. Wiring money through services like Western Union or MoneyGram is risky offices and honest companies won’t require you to use these Type a company or product name into your favorite payment methods. search engine with words like “review,” “complaint” situation, like “IRS call.” You can even search for phone numbers to see if other people have reported them as scams. DON’T BELIEVE YOUR CALLER ID Technology makes it easy for scammers to fake caller ID information, so the name and number you see aren’t always real. If someone calls asking for money or personal information, hang up. If you think the caller might be telling the truth, call back to a number you know is 4 Credit cards have significant fraud protection built DO ONLINE SEARCHES or “scam.” Or search for a phrase that describes your 3 CONSIDER HOW YOU PAY genuine. 6 TALK TO SOMEONE Before you give up your money or personal information, talk to someone you trust. Con artists want you to make decisions in a hurry. They might even threaten you. Slow down, check out the story, do an online search, consult an expert — or just tell a friend. 7 HANG UP ON ROBOCALLS If you answer the phone and hear a recorded sales pitch, hang up and report it to the FTC. These calls are illegal, and often the products are bogus. Don’t press 1 to speak to a person or to be taken off the list. That could DON’T PAY UPFRONT FOR A PROMISE lead to more calls. probably take the money and disappear. Learn where to get 8 real help with these issues at consumer.ftc.gov. you agree to a free trial, research the company and read Someone might ask you to pay in advance for things like debt relief, credit and loan offers, mortgage assistance, or a job. They might even say you’ve won a prize, but first you have to pay taxes or fees. If you do, they will 16 RPCRA.ORG | MAY/JUNE 2019 BE SKEPTICAL ABOUT FREE TRIAL OFFERS Some companies use free trials to sign you up for products and bill you every month until you cancel. Before