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How To Be Safe Online - Part 1

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The internet is a great place to explore, to find information, to shop and to earn some money.
In fact many people have built reputable businesses purely based on the internet.
We already know it is possible to create a business on the internet much the same as having a bricks and mortar business such as a shop.
Most internet businesses are legitimate and are offering a service or product in exchange for money.
Unfortunately the similarities to the non offline world do not end there.
We have all heard about the shady sales people selling products which never materialize.
The builders that charge extortionate fees for work which did not need to be done.
The confidence tricksters that have conned many people out of their life savings.
The internet also has it's fair share of shady characters who will use many different types of scams to con you out of your hard money.
I aim to highlight some of the most common scams I have come across with the intention of saving you the pain of being conned by the ever resourceful scam artists.
Scam 1: Update your account emails.
These are emails which look like legitimate emails from your bank or building society.
Normally they ask you click on a link and login using your password.
They will try to compel you to carryout this action often using text "like your account will be deactivated if you do not login" or "your account will be closed in 48 hours if you do not confirm your account".
Do not click on the link.
The scammer has created a website which looks just like your banks, you cannot tell the difference.
The scammer will take your details and empty out your account before you have a clue.
Always access your online bank account via a secure connection and by typing in the address on your web browser.
Scam 2: You have been awarded $1,000,000 This is one of the oldest scam both on and off the internet.
You receive a mail congratulating you on your win or award.
Once you respond you are told there is a transfer fee to release the money.
Then there is another fee and another one and so on and so on.
The fees get bigger and bigger.
Many people have lost small fortunes with this scam.
Do not fall for it.
No one is going to give you a load of money for nothing.
Just hit delete.
This scam is often called the Nigerian scam as it was invented in Nigeria.
Scam 3: Premium Rate Calls This where you are sent a mail which is specifically geared towards you dialling a number for more information.
Quite often this number is a premium rate number which will often charge at an extortionate rate.
The calls are put together in such a way that you are kept on the phone for as long as possible costing you more and more.
Be very careful which calling numbers which look unusual.
It could cost you a packet.
Scam 4: False Surveys These are surveys which on the surface appear to be legitimate but are actually designed to extract personal information from you without you realizing.
Sometimes they will even request bank account details and passwords.
Do not complete emailed surveys or survey which you get to by clicking a link.
Scam 5: Matrix Schemes These are very similar to the offline matrix schemes of the 80's.
Effectively there are many variations of these scams.
Often they involve you having to recruit people who then recruit others and sell products.
You make a commissions on their sales etc..
Generally very few people make any money at all.
These schemes tend to have a joining fee some even charge a training fee and encourage to buy large amounts of the product because it's so easy to sell.
Please don't fall for these very few of these schemes if any work.
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