International Fraud Awareness Week: How to Spot Fraud Online?

International Fraud Awareness Week: How to Spot Fraud Online?

International Fraud Awareness Week is the perfect time for all of us to start discussions among peers, coworkers, friends, and family about how important fraud prevention is to society as a whole. We live in a very exciting but dangerous world right now, and it is our duty to take some time to educate ourselves and our closest ones on how to spot fraud online.

Fraud can come in various forms, from phone calls and emails to advertisements and the internet. No matter the type of fraud, it’s a crime, and we should do everything in our power to prevent it from happening.

Cybercriminals are constantly on the hunt to make money at your expense. With the massive growth of online services and users, online fraud has become one of the most common crimes affecting people worldwide.

There are many known different types of online fraud in the world; some of the most common ones are:

  1. Identity theft
  2. Untrustworthy clone websites
  3. Phishing

International Fraud Awareness Week: How to Spot Fraud Online? | Le VPN

By far, the easiest and least real expensive method of protecting yourself from the most common types of online fraud is to share as little information about yourself as possible. However, for some, this is not possible, so they must go through several steps to ensure their safety and privacy stay intact.

Fortunately, there are dozens of simple yet effective tips and tricks one can use in order to secure themselves when surfing online. Some of the most popular ways to ensure safety online are using VPNs from trustworthy providers such as Le VPN, installing antivirus programs, and regularly patching and updating operating systems.

Run a Virus Scan

Running an antivirus scan is a crucial part of protecting yourself online and an efficient way to spot malicious intent. The number of scans and the regularity, though, can vary on how often you surf the internet. However, it is highly recommended to run a virus scan on your computer at least once a week.

A system without an antivirus program is just like a house without doors. An open house will attract all the intruders into your home; similar to that, a computer without an antivirus installed will end up inviting all the viruses to the system.

One of the most common ways cybercriminals and hackers access their victim’s computers is through malware or virus programs. This is precisely why you need antivirus software installed on your computer, as well as the need to regularly and manually update it.

Keep a Close Eye for Poor Grammar

Some fraudsters do not even make an effort to mask their fraudulent behavior, so they are easiest to avoid. There are many scamming sites out there with poor grammar and spelling mistakes, so keep a close eye on that, as it is the easiest way you can save yourself from trouble.

On the other hand, legitimate and reliable websites take great care in having a professional-looking site. Grammar errors and spelling errors mean that the website went up quickly, so you should raise an eyebrow at that and ask yourself why that is.

However, the truth is that everybody makes mistakes, and this can happen to anyone, so make sure to carry out some research on the site and read past reviews, as it will help you determine whether it was just a one-time slip-up, or the site is actually a scam.

If It’s Too Good To Be True, It’s Most Likely a Fraud

If you get some too-good-to-be-true offer online, it’s most likely a fraud, and you should automatically be very skeptical. The best to do in this situation is not to act based on your emotions because that is precisely what cybercriminals and scammers want you to do. Instead, verify the story and beware of the “-ing,” such as phishing, spoofing, and vishing. Do not forget; it’s highly important to be vigilant.

Generally, the internet has made our lives much more convenient and simple. However, with simplicity comes bigger challenges, one of them being online fraud. A lot of the time, fake e-commerce sites and gambling sites will promote offers that are just too good to be true. Luckily, this can be avoided by just using your common sense.

Be Careful Of How Much Personal Data You Share

There’s a reason why it’s called “persona data” this type of information belongs to you and shouldn’t be shared lightly. Do not give out your personal data unless you are absolutely sure that the site you’re giving it to is 100% trustworthy. If a site asks for your info, the purpose of it should be transparently outlined and explained in detail.

The next thing you should be aware of and do is keep track of to whom you’ve given your sensitive data. In this way, if something happens, like the site getting hacked or you stop using their service, you will be reminded to contact them and ask them to delete your data. The fewer places your sensitive data is shared, the less the risk of becoming a victim of fraud.

Never Trust a Public WiFi

There may finally come a day when you will need to connect to an unsecured, free public WiFi network. If this is the real case, try to understand the risk of public WiFis as it can help you minimize and avoid the chances of falling victim to an attack.

When using public WiFi, anybody around can easily “eavesdrop” on your WiFi signals and, if the signals are not adequately protected, can see what you do on the network. This is why it’s highly recommended to use a VPN from reputable VPN providers such as Le VPN. With a VPN, your internet traffic gets encrypted so no one can intercept it via public and unsecured WiFi.

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Written by Vuk Mujović @VukMujovic

Vuk Mujović is the founder of MacTíre Consulting, an analyst, data management expert, and a long-term writer on all things business & tech. He authored blogs, articles, and opinion pieces aimed to help both companies and individuals achieve growth without compromising their security. Vuk is a regular guest author to Le VPN Blog since January 2018, where he gives his expert opinion on the topics related to cybersecurity, privacy, online freedom, and personal data protection. He also often shares his tips and best practices in relation to internet security and digital safety of private individuals and small businesses, including some additional applications of using a VPN service.

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