Since the dawn of civilization, some people were clever enough to find loopholes in the system and exploit them, while also conning people into relinquishing their hard-earned valuables by using some kind of a fake story or scam. Even today, these con artists find innovative ways to fool people and rip them off. It’s the oldest trick in the book and people still prey on the ignorance of others to earn money fast.
However, it’s exactly the ignorance that’s your worst enemy in that kind of situation, not the con artist. Truthfully, fraud victims made a choice of believing a con artist or a scam, but they were never forced to give up their money. Nevertheless, if you inform yourself about the tricks that con artists use and if you tread carefully in suspicious situations, you may avoid scams altogether. Here are a few ways you can deal with consumer fraud.
Mortgage frauds are one of the most common types of consumer fraud, because scammers are most likely to prey on desperate people that fear to lose their homes, due to financial troubles. These con artists know what they are doing and they seem like professionals that can help you save your home after all. However, nothing can be further from the truth and if you are desperate enough to believe these people, then you will find yourself in even more trouble than you realize.
The most common types of mortgage frauds are the foreclosure scams. Foreclosure happens when you are behind on your mortgage payments and your lender is allowed to repossess your property. Of course, you’d stop at nothing to prevent that, which might include falling for a scam.
When someone calls you, or visits you and offers to help out, make sure you research both the offer and the company that makes the offer. Don’t rush into sealing the deal, especially if the deal sounds too good to be true.
Credit card scams
Nowadays, people use less cash and they make their purchases or transactions using debit and credit cards. More often than not, people make careless debit card transactions and they end up becoming victims of a fraud or victims of an identity theft.
Needless to say, hackers and scammers have ways of stealing your credit card information and misusing it, if you are not careful enough. For instance, you may be scammed by making online purchases using your debit card on unprotected websites or by using public wireless access for financial transactions.
Regardless, make sure you check your bank statements often and look for any suspicious behavior. If you haven’t lost your debit card, but you spot some unauthorized purchases in your name, then you are already a victim of an identity theft, so make sure you notify your bank immediately. Also, it may be a good idea to consult with consumer fraud lawyers and get some advice on how to get out of that nasty situation. Moreover, never let your debit card out of your sight and make sure you don’t have your PIN number written down in your phone or wallet.
Impersonators and imposters
Con artists have a tendency to pretend that they are someone they are not, such as government agents, lenders, financial experts and so on. For example, the most common types of imposters are government officials that show up at your doorstep saying that you have won a prize and that you have to pay taxes or service charges before you are able to collect your winnings. They may also tell you to wire them money right away or pay for insurance for the delivery of your reward.
Another good example is fake debt collectors that present themselves as the representatives of the government claiming you have an unpaid debt. They may threaten you with arrest or lawsuit if you don’t pay what you allegedly owe. Never trust these impersonators, because no government official would ever ask for money transfers or for you to pay for some services. Always make sure you check the background of any story that may sound suspicious or even true for that matter.
Consumer frauds are more common than they should be and scammers constantly prey on people. Make sure you are careful when handling your debit or credit cards and also make sure you check any offer that comes your way. The more you educate yourself about dealings of scammers, the more chances you have of avoiding a fraud.