12 Scammers’ New Tricks It’s Better to Know About to Avoid Trouble
If there was an award for Best Actor among swindlers and crooks, they all would have lots of prizes and trophies. Sometimes even the most common situations can be thoroughly planned by scammers, so that you will have no idea that it’s all fake.
Bright Side gathered the newest tricks that crooks use in big cities and found out how we can protect ourselves to avoid unpleasant incidents.
12. Clothes on a windshield
Be careful if you notice any strange item on your car’s windshield. Criminals use this method to distract you and attack you or steal your bag while you’re busy removing the clothes. Robbers usually use this trick at night in shopping mall parking lots.
- What to do? Don’t try to remove the items from your windshield, get in the car and try to drive to a safe place or lock the doors and call the police or ask your friends for help.
11. Dropped money
A boy comes up to you in the street and says that you’ve dropped your money. You’re confused and can’t remember where actually you’ve put it so you thank the boy and go away. Suddenly his parents come up to you and claim that you’ve stolen the boy’s money when he just wanted to make change. You’re shocked and the parents ask you to give the money back and compensate moral damage.
- What to do? Keep in mind that there’s just a tiny chance that someone will give you money that you’ve dropped. But if this situation happens, first, you should check whether your money’s actually gone and only then you say “thank you” for the person’s help. Never take money or other items (a wallet or a ring) if they’re not yours. If this type of thing still happens to you, go to any public place with security cameras and call the police.
10. Purchases stolen from under your nose
Imagine that you’ve just bought a TV and now you’re on your way to the car. A security guard stops you near the exit to check your stuff and the receipt. Suddenly a sales associate comes up to you, says that they’ve sold you a damaged TV by mistake, and asks you to come to the warehouse to get a new one while the security guard watches your purchase. You follow the associate, but suddenly they disappear and so does the security guard with your belongings.
- What to do? Check the items you want to buy before you take them away and never leave your purchases with strangers. It’s recommended to take your friends with you if you are going to buy an expensive item.
9. Lottery victory
You’re offered a free lottery ticket in a store. You scratch it and realize that you’re a winner. To get your prize, you have to call a phone number provided. You call the number, wait a few minutes on the line, provide the confirmation number found on your winning ticket and your personal data, an operator says that they’ll call you when the prize is ready. But you’ll never get a prize and you’ll never receive your money that you spent calling that premium line back.
- What to do? Don’t take free lottery cards. If you decide to take one and win, check the information about this lottery on the internet before calling.
8. Hungry ATM
We all know that scammers use special devices that read our card numbers and small cameras to steal our money. But we have to be even more careful nowadays. Robbers have started putting a piece of tape in the card slot and cards get stuck in there. You think that the ATM is broken but actually crooks just take your card and walk away while you’re calling the bank to inform them about this problem.
- What to do? It’s better to withdraw cash at a bank where people work. You might also want to ask a bank cashier to help you. If there’s just an ATM, you have to check the card slot and the keypad. If an ATM ate your card, don’t leave, call the bank via the hotline, and block your card via a mobile app, if possible.
7. Electronic pickpocketing
Modern technologies let us pay for our purchases with our cards or smartphones in just one touch. Scammers have special devices that help read information in your electronic wallet. They just have to touch your gadget or a credit card to get access to your e-wallet.
- What to do? It’s recommended to buy a wallet that offers scam protection. You can also set a daily spending limit on your smartphone so you don’t lose all your money in a few seconds.
6. Free perfume samples
You make your way out of a shopping mall when a pretty girl comes up to you and asks if you’d like a sample spray. She sprays the perfume on your wrist, you like its smell, and the woman wants to spray it on your neck but “accidentally” sprays the perfume in your eyes. You’re blinded and suddenly a man runs up to you and steals your wallet and bags.
- What to do? Keep in mind that these types of salespeople only work inside shopping malls. Try to avoid strangers’ offers on the streets even if they’re really interesting.
5. Car keys
You’re sitting at a street cafe, a man approaches you on your right side, and suddenly drops his car keys. You bend and pick them up while his partner grabs your bag on your left side.
- What to do? Choose a table that’s not so close to the sidewalk and that’s close to a wall. Have your bag zipper closed and if it has a shoulder strap, put a table leg through the strap. Never pick up people’s money, keys, or wallets. You might just motion toward them and let them know that they’ve dropped something.
4. Free Wi-Fi
Be careful while trying to access the Wi-Fi in public places. Scammers create free networks with the name of the mall or hotel that you might try to connect to first. Sometimes it requires your personal data so crooks get access to your information and even passwords.
- What to do? If you’re in a public place, ask the help desk if there are any free Wi-Fi networks. If you really need to access the internet, it’s better to go to a cafe or a restaurant and use reputable networks.
3. Advantageous offer
Have you ever received calls from telemarketers or employees of various companies who offered their services? For example, a bank that you’ve never heard of offers you a loan with extremely favorable terms. You don’t even have to go to this bank: their courier will bring you an agreement and the sum. But first, you’re required to pay a certain sum of money and once you pay the company disappears.
- What to do? If you take out a loan, use a big, reliable bank and read the agreement carefully. Remember that banks don’t charge any fees in advance.
2. Dream job
Many people would probably like to get a dream job and move to another country. You post your CV on a foreign website and wait for a miracle. And you might really receive a call or a letter where a manager tells that your CV is great, you got this job, your salary will be even higher than you expected, the company will help you to get your visa, and they will give you an apartment for free. You may even receive an agreement and a link to the company’s website. But you’ll be also asked to pay additional expenses related to your moving to another country or you’ll have to buy job-related tutorials that will be paid back on your first paycheck. Of course you’re ready to spend a few hundred dollars and you even might get the visa, but when you arrive you realize that this company doesn’t exist or that no one has ever heard of you.
- What to do? Remember that even a perfect CV doesn’t guarantee anything. First, you have to pass several job interviews and second, no one can make you pay for anything in advance. Always check out information about companies as well as their contact details.
1. A simple life hack against burglars
Burglars often pretend to be members of various services: for example, pest control services that come to inspect your house. In fact, they thoroughly look for different things that can be stolen later.
- What to do? Don’t open the door if you’re not expecting anyone to come over. If the members of a certain organization do come, you should call the company and clarify whether these people work there or not. Some people even buy a police uniform and put it near their front door to deter burglars.
Do you know any other methods to protect yourself from scams? Share them with us in the comments.