During the summer, when teens have more free time and often spend it surfing the web, scammers try to take advantage of trusted consumers by offering them illegal services ranging from fake designer products to incredibly good job offers. Let’s try. ESET Lithuania cyber security expert Lukas Apinis discusses 5 tricks most commonly used by scammers to trick teenagers with money and personal information.
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Most teens, while no longer as trustworthy as younger children, easily fall under the influence of others. It has been observed that teenagers, who rarely face awkward life situations, get easily involved in cyber scams. This kind of youthful innocence and innocence can make a teenager an easy target of programmers. By manipulating the trusting nature of a teenager, scammers gain access to personal information, finances.
Specialist L. Epinis discusses the most common scams and how to avoid them. If you are a parent or guardian, the expert recommends that you share the information with them to protect your children and the entire family.
1. Scams on Social Networks
Most of the teenagers spend a lot of time surfing the internet, social networks. Not surprisingly, scammers are attacking these platforms using the most popular gadgets among teenagers. These types of scams come in many forms, making it difficult to name a single situation. One of the most popular scam strategies is links to articles about celebrities with shocking headlines. Clicking on such links will take the teen to an infected site.
Fraudsters can usually contact their victims directly by offering to participate in games and lotteries. Such scams also use a fake and often infected link to a computer, which usually damages a mobile device and even provides access to personal information.
Mr Epinis recalls that if a suspicious message is received, it should be ignored, especially if it is a reference or an ambiguous proposition. If you receive a link from a stranger, it is recommended that you do not click on it and delete the message.
2. Luxury Goods – At Low Prices
Another popular online scam is to use fake ads about luxury goods at extremely low prices. To attract the attention of teenagers, scammers use well-known brands popular among young people. From expensive, limited-edition sneakers, through expensive clothing lines for middle-income earners, to job offers.
Scammers use fake websites full of product offers from these brands. When shopping on such sites, the buyer gets fake luxury goods, in other cases – he is left empty-handed. The worst case scenario for such scams is to use credit card details to launder money.
An ESET expert urges you to be vigilant and reminds you to always follow the golden rule of the Internet: “If something sounds too good to be true, it’s right.” If you get offers to buy luxury goods online at extremely low prices, chances are it was a scam. Despite the unreliable circumstances, if you are interested in the offer, you should do an online search for distributors, check your email. Store credibility.
3. Fake Scholarship
At the end of the school year, graduates enter a new phase of life, which often begins with admission to universities. Higher education at university can cost a significant amount, so some students are looking for scholarships. Scammers use information from students seeking financial aid to create information about non-existent scholarships.
For example, information forms for scholarships often require payment of a registration fee. Of course, a scholarship is not awarded to a teenager, and the money paid remains in the pockets of scammers. Applications for payment of scholarship or processing fee can also be viewed on the registration form. Unfortunately, the result leads to a loss of money.
Luke Hopes advises, especially before signing the scholarship agreement, to check that the organization is credible. To be absolutely certain, it is recommended to contact the Heads of Institution – “Remember that you cannot rely on advertisements with the registration fee before signing the relevant documents with the scholarship provider.” necessary,” comment the experts.
4. Fake Job Offers
The hobbies of teenagers range from traveling, concerts, interest in fashion to collecting sneakers. It is difficult for a teenager to enjoy these activities as it requires a steady income. During the summer a large part of the youth is in search of work to meet the leisure expenses.
Job seekers are also falling prey to online scammers. Fake, especially telecommunications ads with very good terms often appear online. On job search sites, scammers create fake job offer questionnaires, often offering to work from home to make large sums of money. The main purpose of fraud is to obtain personal information which will be used for illegal activities. Often it is opening a bank account in the name of the victim by forging illegal documents.
L. Epinis observed – if an interesting job offer seems suspicious, check information about the online job offer institution – “If you find unreliable information, don’t take the risk. It’s worth remembering that you Can provide financial information only after employment, so do not rush to provide it to unreliable sources, ”comments the expert.
5. Identity Theft
Like most things, the search for romantic relationships has moved into the online space. Dating sites have also opened up new opportunities for online scammers. These types of scammers are not just limited to dating sites, they also use social networks and private messages for such scams.
The most popular strategy is to pretend to have a personality that will be attractive to the chosen victim. Scammers continue to correspond and work until they reach their goal of paying a certain amount. There are also scammers using tactics such as blackmailing fraudulent and manipulative images. Fraudsters collect huge amount by threatening to distribute these pictures online.
ESET cyber security expert urges you to keep quiet – “Be careful when interacting with people online and be suspicious of someone who wants to maintain an overly close relationship who confesses love only when the conversation starts. By searching the photo and making sure that it is a real person, you can protect yourself from such fraud, ”comments the expert.
A cyber security expert outlines the steps to feel safe online
ESET cyber security expert Lucas Appinis explains three key steps a young mobile phone owner should take to keep their data secure online:
- Smartphone updates: These not only bring new features to your device, but also ensure that you are running the most secure version of the operating system. This is because non-advanced operating systems sometimes have vulnerabilities that the manufacturer only fixes when upgrading the current version to the latest release. System vulnerabilities can be exploited by malware if they are not installed.
- After making a payment, sign out of sites: If you are doing bank transactions or making purchases with your smartphone, sign out of those sites when the transaction is complete. Do not keep your username and password stored on your phone and avoid operating when using public Wi-Fi networks. For added protection, install an antivirus program.
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