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Protecting Yourself from Scams and Financial Theft

At a recent financial literacy event for college students, a statement was made that every hour, over 1200 people are affected by some sort of financial scam or identity theft. If that is not enough to get your attention, on the news today was a blurb referencing yet another phone scam, this time using Publishers Clearing House as the lure to draw in the intended victim. Ironically, this has become such an issue, Publishers Clearing House has a blog post that addresses this.

Here is what you need to know. No bank, credit card company, sweepstakes company, and so forth will ever call you and ask you to provide your personal information over the phone. If you are uncertain of the legitimacy of a caller, make an excuse and get off the phone or simply just hang up. Contact the business on your own terms to determine if it is a legitimate inquiry or a scam. Never be afraid to advocate for yourself. Never provide your personal information over the phone unless you initiated the call.

Scammers generally ask you to verify personal information or to send money in advance in order for you to receive your prize. If you are required to pay, it is a scam. These scammers are relentless, do not be bullied. If it sounds too good to be true, it is. Educate yourself and question everything. Contact your local law enforcement if you suspect a scam.

Other great resources are the Better Business Bureau and the Federal Trade Commission. Protect yourself and avoid becoming a scam victim!

 

Permanent link to this article: http://jackson.ifas.ufl.edu/fycs/2016/02/05/protecting-yourself-from-scams-and-financial-theft/