Andy Green's Blog

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How to Detect a Scam

The Internet is a great tool that has revolutionized the way we do business. While it offers a lot of good things for buyers and sellers, it also has a downside. Although most products are from a reputable source, some people are out there trying to scam you out of your money. Regardless of how you do business, there will always be certain people that are dishonest. There’s really no getting around that fact. So how can you protect yourself and make sure that you’re not scammed? Let’s look at a few ways that can help.

Most of these tips are pretty much common sense to most people. If you keep your head at all times, there’s no reason that you should be scammed. However, many competent people make the mistake of being careless. Sometimes it comes back to bite them.

Buy from reputable companies whenever possible. If you know the company, like Wal-mart or Target or something like that, you’re obviously going to be ok. When you can’t buy from them, be careful of the companies. If you’ve never heard of the company that you’re going to buy from, check them out on Google. Usually if there is a scam to be found, it will come up on Google as soon as you type it in. Others have usually been scammed by the same company and you can avoid them right off the bat. You can also visit scam.com and see if the company is listed on there. If you think it might be a scam, many other people have probably been scammed as well. Use the experiences of others to your advantage.

If it sounds too cheap, then you should probably steer clear. Let’s say that someone claims that they’re going to sell you a brand new Mercedes Benz for $500. Would you actually believe that? Of course not! However, there are claims that ridiculous being made by scammers every day and people believe them. No one is going to be able to give things like that away for free on the Internet. Always ask yourself how the company is going to make money from this transaction. If you think they’d be losing money in order to make it happen, you should probably stay away.

Another steadfast rule that you should always obey is staying away from unreachable companies. An even better rule should be to stay away from companies that you can’t call and talk to on the phone. If they only have an email address, they still might be shady. It’s too easy to come up with a fake email address these days. If they don’t have any contact information then stay as far away from the deal as possible. This has scam written all over it.

Overall, scams are usually easy to stay away from. However, sometimes an exceptionally talented scammer gets through and comes up with one that is hard to spot. If this happens, just use caution. If you always use common sense and keep your personal information guarded, you’ll usually be fine.

October 15, 2008 Posted by | Online Security | , , | Leave a comment