Technology and the internet have, without a doubt, made our lives easier, but it came with a price. Online scams in 2019 are more common than ever. The world is now aware of conventional scams, but exploiters keep creating innovative ways to trick you. If you are not well-educated and careful, you will eventually fall prey to one of their traps. Even the most experienced security experts reported they were tricked by online scams when they weren’t careful. Here I have shared some of the most common types of online scams that you may see every day.
Ransomware is considered one of the most dangerous scams because it literally takes over your device and data. All your access is blocked and it is returned to you only when you pay a specific amount of ransomware on the dark web through bitcoins, which are untraceable. There are two types of ransomware:
- Locker ransomware
- Crypto Ransomware
The locker ransomware locks you out of your device. You only see a message with instructions about how much and where to pay to get the key to unlock your device. There are ways to break the lock, but it puts your data at risk. Even if you don’t have any professional data, personal files like photos are precious for all of us.
The crypto ransomware doesn’t lock you out of the device, but it encrypts every single file on your hard disk. You will find a text file in each folder with instruction about the ransom. One of the famous crypto Ransomware is GANDKRAB that would ask for $1,200 to be paid in bitcoins on dark web. It is essential that we all educate ourselves about combating ransomware attacks to avoid such incidents.
This type of scam doesn’t force you into doing anything, but it’s no less evil. There are thousands of online platforms that will make up a fake story or use someone’s misery to gain your sympathy. They ask for your help, then encourage you to help the victim in the story by donating an amount online. Not only are they snatching the rights of those in need, these scammers also get your card information. They take your money and your sensitive information in one swoop. Don’t let their articles, photos, and videos fool you. If you want to help, make sure you do some research first.
Despite so many filters, even the big corporates like Yahoo and Google have failed to fully eradicate phishing emails. A phishing email is a trick to get you to click a link or provide your information by pretending to be someone else. These scammers would pretend to be someone important like banks, and send you emails that get you worried. For example, millions of email users reported that they received an email that looked like it came from their bank warning them about their card being blocked.
These phishing emails got them to provide sensitive information about their bank account in the name of verification. They thought they were providing this information to the bank that already has this information. Where in fact, all that data went to the servers of those scammers. Remember one thing, a bank or any such organization would never ask you to provide sensitive information online or on the phone.
Malware & Spyware
Malware hurts your device and operating system, and spyware only gathers personal and sensitive information without catching any attention. Such viruses are usually attached with useful software or presented as one. You download and install not knowing what they really are. This most commonly happens when you try to get a premium software free of cost. Make sure you download only trusted software and only from their official website to stay safe from this scam.
Image credit: Online Scams via Tero Vesalainen/shutterstock