Tips for Avoiding Online Scams in London

The advent of internet and its success has also, inevitably, breathed a life into online scams that were unheard of before. Whilst the internet has opened doors of opportunity in different spheres and bridged the gap between all corners of the world, there are always people trying to use the technology to defraud others.

Unfortunately, most people are not very tech savvy, which means they become easy targets for online scams, which can result in huge losses for victims. However, there are certain steps, like the ones provided in this guide, which you can take to protect yourself and avoid online scams.

Instructions

  • 1

    Don’t buy anything from untrusted websites


    Since one can now buy almost anything online these days with the availability of online stores, scammers can pretend to be selling products through their fake websites. You need to be able to distinguish between what ‘appears’ to be an original website of the product and what actually is.

    Do not, at any cost, give away your credit card information on a website unless you are absolutely sure about it.

    A good way to go about this is to carefully read the URL in your address bar (in your web browser). Fake websites have names similar to the websites they’re imitating but they can’t have the exact name, which means you can spot fake websites if you read their addresses carefully.

  • 2

    Don’t respond to any e-mails asking for information


    Most online scams are perpetrated through emails asking for contact information usually on the pretext of a lottery or a prize. Scammers send out the same e-mails to thousands of recipients, and wait for responders. If you get any email saying that you’ve won a lottery, or that someone has left behind a huge estate for you in their will, take it with a huge spoon of salt (not a pinch) and trash it for your own good.

  • 3

    Do not click on pop-up or pop-under ads


    Pop-up or pop-under ads are typically from third-party websites, which means the original website which you were visiting is not associated with the content on pop-ups. Hence, if you click on or interact with any such content, you are still at risk of downloading malware or getting your computer infected.

    For your own safety, you should install pop-up blocking extensions or add-ons for your web browser.

  • 4

    Do not click any untrusted links or URLS


    You might think clicking on a link is harmless but it’s not. Hackers can redirect you to unsecure networks and install malware or trojans on your computer to take control of it and get access to your private information like contact details and financial records or transaction history.

    Mostly such harmful links are sent out in e-mails disguised as legitimate websites and sources. To be safe, you should only ever click on links in e-mails you asked for or trust.

  • 5

    Contact the authorities


    If you think you have been scammed or your computer has been compromised, you can contact Action Fraud on their website here.

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