By being aware of these frauds, you may stay one step ahead of cyberterrorists this season.
It makes sense that so many of us eagerly anticipate the holidays. It’s an occasion to spend time with loved ones and friends, exchange gifts and holiday memories, and make plans for the upcoming year.
1. 𝗣𝗮𝗰𝗸𝗮𝗴𝗲 𝗗𝗲𝗹𝗶𝘃𝗲𝗿𝘆 𝗦𝗰𝗮𝗺𝘀
It’s hardly unexpected that fraudsters have devised a number of techniques involving package deliveries given that an estimated three billion parcels were dispatched over the last holiday season.
One common scam involves receiving a text or email asking you to click on a link for a variety of fictitious purposes, such as receiving an update on the delivery date, tracking the location of the package, indicating your preferred method of payment, giving delivery instructions, or paying a shipping fee. Additionally, you might receive a phone number to contact for more details regarding your delivery. Fraudsters may portray a sense of urgency in their message because they want you to act without thinking.
Unfortunately, following the link could infect your phone or computer with malware, giving a cybercriminal access to your device and the ability to steal your passwords. It might also send you to a form that asks for personal information, which can open the door to identity theft.
When you contact the number, you often speak with a person who sounds nice and who requests that you confirm your personal information or supply the credit card information related to your purchase. Additionally, you can be asked to pay a shipping fee, customs fee, or tax for the package.
If you receive any of these notifications, it is advisable to just enter the tracking number supplied and visit the shipper’s website to learn more about your purported delivery. You can call the shipper using a verified phone number, or type the website address directly into your browser to avoid being taken to a phony or phishing site that imitates the legitimate one.
Scammers will occasionally call you pretending to be from a package delivery business if they want to be more pushy. If this occurs, just hang up without saying anything personal. Do not call back if you get a voicemail with a call-back number.
2. 𝗠𝗶𝘀𝘀𝗲𝗱 𝗣𝗮𝗰𝗸𝗮𝗴𝗲 𝗦𝗰𝗮𝗺𝘀
Cybercriminals are aware of this. They have therefore devised a scheme in which they leave a note on your door claiming to have a box for you that was unable to be delivered. A phone number to call in order to reschedule the delivery is listed in the note. When you call the number, you will be questioned about your identification, which can then be used to perpetrate fraud.
If you get a missed delivery note, carefully examine it to check for any errors or other red flags indicating it might be fake. Even if the notice appears to be genuine, avoid calling the phone number provided on the message (it’s also a good idea to check your most recent orders to see if a delivery was planned for that date).
3. 𝗚𝗶𝗳𝘁 𝗖𝗮𝗿𝗱 𝗦𝗰𝗮𝗺𝘀
The time of year for gift cards. Scammers have, of course, developed some schemes to exploit this.
A typical gift card scam entails receiving a fraudulent or “phishing” email or text from someone you don’t know, such a company CEO, asking you to buy several gift cards for a work-related occasion. Or maybe it’s a private request purportedly coming from a friend or relative who says they need assistance obtaining gift cards.
During the holidays, if you get any strange requests for gift cards, call the person immediately to verify the request’s legitimacy.
4. 𝗦𝗼𝗰𝗶𝗮𝗹 𝗠𝗲𝗱𝗶𝗮 𝗦𝗰𝗮𝗺𝘀
You could come across holiday-themed campaigns or competitions on social media platforms that give away gift cards or coupons in exchange for taking a quick online survey. Sadly, the survey is frequently fraudulent. It is merely a way to obtain your personal information in order to engage in identity theft or other forms of cybercrime.
Or perhaps a reward is only for liking or sharing a social media post. But doing either could lead to a malware infection on your device.
The final word? During the holidays, use social media with extreme caution, especially when tempting offers that look unusually generous.
5. “𝗕𝗿𝘂𝘀𝗵𝗶𝗻𝗴” 𝗦𝗰𝗮𝗺𝘀
Even if the scam’s name is strange, the scam itself is a stranger indeed.
You’ll get a package from an internet store that allows consumers to leave evaluations about their purchases that you didn’t order. The object is usually lightweight and inexpensive.
You could assume it’s just a present from a stranger trying to spread kindness because it’s the holiday season. In actuality, it’s most likely coming from someone who wants to fabricate good reviews for their products when they sell them on internet marketplaces. However, the marketplace demands that a transaction be validated with an authentic tracking number that demonstrates a successful delivery in order to publish a review.
Your mystery package enters the picture here. A tracking number is generated by the purchase. Therefore, your phony present giver can write the review once the package has been delivered.
the positive news The item won’t cost you anything, and you’re not required to send it back. Frequently, the sender simply looked up your name and address online at random.
However, it’s possible that the scammer used your existing account or made a new one for you at the marketplace. Therefore, you need to let the market know about the activity. Change your password as soon as possible if you have an account on the website. Additional details on this fraud are available from the United States Postal Inspection Service.