Almost everyone has been the target of a scam at some stage in his or her lives, and many people have repeated, ongoing exposure to scam attempts. The aim of SCAMSTERS INC. is to provide you with information you need to Protect Yourself from scams, so you can recognise a set-up and avoid the hook and the inevitable sting of a scam. Its your Daily dose of Scams in your neighbourhood.its an Archive for all thats related to SCAMS,FRAUDs,Etc....

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SCAMSTERS INC provides an Antiscam - Useful External links page to similar and related to Bangalore and rest of India. Finally, SCAMSTERS INC. provides advice for those who have fallen for the bait and been hooked at 'I've been scammed. What should I do?

SECURITY TIPS for not gettin SCAMED!!!!


1.Safety tips to avoid Identity Theft

Here are some safety tips to protect you from ID theft:--

Never disclose personal information to anyone you do not trust.

Do not provide your information until and unless you are sure about the caller. If in case of doubt you call them using the bank phone number.

Remember that banks always ask for specific characters like last 4 digits of your card or SSN not your entire card number or SSN for verification.

Ensure that your personal documents are always secure. Your personal documents include your bank account details, credit cards, driving license, plastic cards, card receipts, financial statements and even utility bills.

Periodically peruse your bank statements to check for any transactions that have occurred without your knowledge.

Dispose of financial statements, card receipts and other personal documents with utmost care. Tear or cut into pieces any such documents before trashing them.

Keep the authorities informed if you have lost any personal item. For example, report a stolen credit card.

Raise an alarm if you receive a telephone call or letter saying you have beenapproved or denied credit for accounts you know nothing about, or you receive a credit card statement for an account that you never opened.

While paying by credit card, never let it out of your sight. Raise an alarm if the card is being swiped more than required, or if it is being scanned.

In case of a change in address, ensure to notify the correct address to all recipients who send you statements to your address.

2. Safety tips to avoid Phishing

Here are some safety tips to protect you from phishing:--

When you receive emails claiming to be sent by banking institution asking you to enter your account details, DO NOT do so! Your bank already has your details and clearly would not want them again.

Check if the email that you receive has your name spelt correctly. Fraudsters simply try to guess your name by your email address. DO NOT open emails that have your name spelt incorrectly.

Check the email to see if it is addressed to your name. Fraudsters never personalize emails, they will refer you as “Dear Customer” or “Dear Valued Customer” because they send emails randomly to a million email addresses and they even don’t know that you have an account with the bank. Your bank or ecommerce company on the other hand will refer you with your name.

DO NOT respond to emails that seem like they are sent from your bank. Some of the claims made in these emails may be the following:
1. You are to receive a refund,
2. The bank is trying to protect you from a fraud
3. The bank needs some security and maintenance update on your account as asks for your
account details.

If you receive such email always check back with your bank directly or speak to the customer service representative of the bank.

NEVER enter your credit card details and password in a website which you suspect is not genuine.

DO NOT share your account details, password, or credit card details with anyone who you do not know or trust.

DO NOT open unsolicited emails.

It is a good practice to type in the URL of your bank yourself, or bookmark it if the URL is difficult to remember. DO NOT follow links to a banking website from another website or email.

Verify a website’s URL carefully before you provide your login details on any web page.Fraudsters create fake websites that have URLs closely resembling the original.

Log in to your accounts regularly and look for account transactions that you do not recognize.

DO NOT send your account details and/or password over an email to anyone.

3. Safety tips to avoid Card Fraud

Here are some safety tips to protect you from credit card, debit card, and ATM skimming fraud:

Credit Card

Always check your monthly bank statements for any suspicious transactions,

Shred the financial documents with care

Do not store your personal and credit card information on the computer

Do not write the PIN number down.

During the online transactions, check if the web address starts with HTTPS, which ensures the encryption of all important data.

Never delay to report a lost credit card as the repercussions can be highly disastrous.

Close the account that you suspect is being hit by the fraud.

Thoroughly check the authenticity of the firm, the website, or any other transactional society where your money would be flowing through.

Never give away your personal information over the phone unless you are sure of the person the other end.

Take a pause before venturing into any kind of online transaction and decide upon the authenticity of the transaction.

Debit Card:

When you key in your PIN number at an ATM, make sure that you sufficiently obscure the keypad from being viewed by an onlooker.

NEVER let the merchant take your debit card out of your sight. There is no need for him/her to do so, unless he/she intends to do something unlawful.

Secure your debit card physically by storing it at a safe place.

NEVER write your PIN number at a place where it can be seen by someone who you do not intend to show it to.

ALWAYS shred the receipts from merchants that you no longer require, especially when you have paid for using your debit card.

If you do not receive your debit card or PIN number from the bank within a reasonable amount of time after requesting one, check with the bank when it was sent and when you should expect to receive it. It may have been picked up by someone else in transit.

When at an ATM, make sure that no external devices are attached to the ATM machine and no wires are hanging around.

Check your account statements carefully for transactions that you may not have made.

Using ATM machine and Point of Sale:

Safeguard your credit cards and ATM cards at all times.

Never let these cards out of your sight

You swipe a credit card only once, if it’s being swiped more than once, you need to question this action.

If you notice something suspicious about the card slot on an ATM (like an attached device), do not use it and report it to the responsible authorities.

Never trust your ATM card and credit card PIN numbers to strangers.

Beware of your surroundings while withdrawing money at ATM centers. Do not crumple and throw away the transaction slips or credit card memos: read them, make a mental note of the details and then, either tear them or shred them to trash them.

Periodically check your account balances on Internet or by requesting your bank or credit
card company to send you statements to ensure that no transactions are happening behind
your back.

While entering any personal identification numbers, use your discretion to shield the keypad so
that your hand movements are not very visible and you enter your passwords secretly.

4. Safety tips to avoid Online Fraud

Here are some safety tips to protect you from online banking fraud and online auctions fraud:

Online Banking

DO NOT leave your personal documentation at places where it can either be picked up or viewed by anyone who does not need to see them.

DO NOT log in to your online account from an insecure computer network.

When accessing your bank’s Web site, check that the URL is correct and that you are not becoming a victim of phishing.

DO NOT key in your online banking account login details at a website about which you are not sure.

NEVER follow a link in an email which claim is from your bank. Type in your bank’s URL in the browser yourself. DO NOT open any attachments in those emails.

When available, use alternative methods to enter account login details. For example, some banks allow you to click on an on-screen keyboard when logging in and avoid key presses altogether.

DO NOT give your account details over the phone, unless you have initiated the call to a bank’s service center.

Scan your computer periodically to ensure that no spy ware or key logger is installed.

Keep your antivirus software regularly updated

DO NOT respond to emails that ask you to enter your bank account details in any way.

DO NOT send personal information and bank account details over email.

Online Auctions

Be aware of phishing. Verify that you are receiving emails from the correct source and that you are logging in at the correct website.

When making payment, prefer using your credit card over online transfer. Using a credit card give you the opportunity of a chargeback in case the transaction turns out a fraud. Use debit card, wire transfer, or money order only when you trust the seller.

Use reputed escrow services. An escrow service mediates a buyer and a seller. They accept money from buyers and release them to a seller only when the buyer confirms that the product was received to his/her satisfaction. But be wary of sellers or buyers who themselves pose as an escrow service to cheat the other—a buyer posing as an escrow service gets a product released without making payment, or a seller poses as an escrow service to trick the buyer from making a payment.

Check for feedback and rating of the buyer, which most online auction website provide.

DO NOT entertain emails received from outside of the auction website mentioning that the highest bidder has withdrawn and you are now entitled for a product. They veer you off the auction website and you lose any protection that the website may provide.

NEVER make a deal with a seller outside the auction. Although they sound lucrative, you are at a very high risk of being cheated.

READ the auction website’s terms and conditions, buyer protection policy, refund policy before making a transaction. Here, they list in how many days the order will be fulfilled, what if the product you receive is not the same as what was advertised, and so on. Also check that the policies are fair on both buyers and sellers.

Check if the product you are purchasing has appropriate warranty and documentation with it. If not, make sure that you intend to purchase it without that protection. Check if shipping and delivery is covered by the seller or if you have to bear those costs.

Check that you are not purchasing a product that you are not allowed to possess lawfully.

BE WARY of products that offer revolutionary results. In most cases, they are fraudulent claims.

DO NOT respond to emails that ask for your personal information, such as your log in details or credit card details.

READ the online auction website for feedback on the seller and a rating that they give to sellers and buyers. Most online auctions rate the sellers and buyers based on their transactions’ feedback.

READ the product features and the model number that you intend to purchase. Verify these with what is being advertised by the seller.

When giving your credit card details or your debit account details at a website, check that the

Internet connection you are using is secure. Look for a lock at the bottom or https (an‘s’ appended to ‘http’) in the address field of your browser. These indicate that the connection is a secure one.

Avoid making a transaction if anything in the auction seems suspicious to you.

If you are cheated on any product purchase, be sure to post a note on the online auction website and let them know personally.

Romance Scams:

Fraudsters pose as beautiful girls and enroll themselves in various dating and social networking sites. Novice users not aware of this ploy get attracted to them by seeing some fake pictures/videos and contact them. Fraudsters then exploit them to the maximum extent like:

Claiming that they are in deep financial trouble and would like you to support them with some money.

Claiming that they need money as he/she wants to come to US and marry her/him.

Get bank accounts from them for transferring stolen money making them money mules.

Use their address to send bill pay check (sent from compromised accounts) and asking them to cash the check at their bank account and forward the cash to them.

Using their address to send purchased goods bought by stolen cards and then asks them to forward to their country as most of the online shops do not send goods overseas.

Users need to be careful when comes to dating scams because it is an emotional loss apart from a monetary loss. They might lose trust on the Internet and people altogether.

If you are interested in dating an online partner you need to verify the partner carefully before you begin the relationship. If the partner is based overseas, then make sure to call them and verify the phone number and address of the place given by the partner. Because most of the fraudsters even though use a US or UK phone number, they use the forwarding feature of these numbers and stay overseas.

5. Safety tips to protect your Computer

Here are some safety tips to protect you from Key loggers, Trojans, and spy ware:

As a common practice do not open suspicious or unsolicited emails (spam emails). Delete them from your Inbox.

Even if you do open a spam email, under any circumstances do not click on any links, or open/download any files attached to them.

Make sure that you have very good anti-virus software installed on your computer that not only protects your computer from viruses but also from unwanted programs. And make sure you update any latest versions to that software.

Make sure that you have automatic updates / firewall turned on and regularly download the security patches if you are a windows user.

Be very wary when you access websites that provide free downloads (such as music, serial keys, adult content, games, movies etc). They may install harmful programs without your knowledge.

Do not use software on your computer that auto-completes online forms. This can give internet scammers easy access to your personal and credit card details.

While downloading files from the internet make sure it is from a known or reputed source. If the file is an executable application (for example, if the file name ends with “.exe”), make sure you know exactly what it will do.

If a pop-up screen appears on your screen and prompts you for an action (for example if it asks you to ‘Agree’ or ‘Accept’ something), then be sure to read the text in the pop-up screen and any terms and conditions carefully and only when you are sure of the safety should you take an action.


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