Online Scam Alert!

Are you a victim of online scamming? Almost got scammed? Well, we’ll be sharing on ways of avoiding online scamming. Firstly, let’s look at some of the online scams we find here in South Africa

  • “Overnight” online brokers
  • Fake real-estate agents
  • WhatsApp gifting groups
  • Online love scams
  • Building/Renovations
  • Buying/Selling
  • Lottery winners
  • Job Opportunities
  • Vehicles
  • SIM swap

There are many more online scams that one can google about. Many successful scams have similar endings, the victims either lose their own money or fail to receive funds the fraudster promised. Anyone can be a victim to such, but it doesn’t always have to end in tears. Let’s look at some tips that ‘’ has shared to avoid online scamming:

  1. Beware of Internet payment services that you are asked to access through a link or in the body of an email. Remember that links can be masked, and logos and trademarks can be faked online. If you intend to use what you believe is a well-known Internet payment service, visit that company’s website yourself, rather than trust the information or link that another party is suggesting.
  2. Don’t be rushed and a deal that sounds too good to be true probably is. Trust your instincts. Always follow your instincts. If something seems like it’s not right, or someone makes you uncomfortable for any reason, just walk away.
  3. When shopping online there is always a risk that the seller is a scammer with nothing to sell and that the photos of the item for sale were just stolen from someone else on the internet so one tip to avoid getting scammed with that method is to ask for specific photos. Ask the seller to send you a couple of unusual very specific photos of the item for sale, for instance if selling a rifle ask the seller to send you a picture with their forefinger in a certain odd position on the rifle and another with their hand holding the scope. Ask if they can send you a short video clip of the item. You can certainly suspect that something is not right if they won’t do this.
  4. Do a reverse image search on Google. Not foolproof but this can reveal if the image was previously posted on the web.
  5. For seller’s cashier’s checks are NOT the same as cash. Counterfeit checks can look very authentic. Just because the money appears to be available in your account doesn’t mean that the check has cleared and is legitimate. Federal rules require banks to make deposits “available” to consumers quickly, often the following business day. A check takes a long time to clear. It may take a bank week to discover that the deposited check was fraudulent. The bank may still bounce the check if it’s a forgery. Once a victim wires funds onward from such a check, he or she may be liable to the bank for the amount wired. Typically, the bank will not cover the loss, and expects the victim to pay the difference. You can check and verify its legitimacy by contacting the issuing bank. Do not use the contact information that appears on the check. Do a little leg work and obtain the contact information independently through legitimate directories.
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