Sound of the Nation

Scams – What to look out for!

Scams – What to look out for!

Jen spoke to 2 people who have been scammed and gets some advice on what to look out for with online scams!

We’re all aware that there are millions of ways that people are trying to scam us out of our hard earned money but the latest fraud Jennifer Zamparelli was made aware of on her show this morning has really developed a new edge.

It’s also more threatening than anything you may heard of before.

The scam involves a email, in which the victim is told videos or pictures of them engaging in some kind of sexual activity has been recorded on their webcam and will be released to their contact unless they pay a ransom in Bitcoin.

Amy received the email and got in contact with the show’s team in order to highlight what could be a very upsetting and traumatic email to receive.

In her conversation with Jen, Amy explained that she eventually recognised that the email was a scam but not immediately as the fraudsters included some personal information in order to convince her they were genuine.

Amy is not the only person to fall prey to this type of mail and it has apparently been successful in making $1 million in bitcoin in the US from internet users.

Jen also received texts and comments throughout the programme confirming that other Irish internet users have received this latest threatening mail.

Usually this kind of scam would be caught in your junk folder but according to research carried out on the show, scammers have now found a work around by using a certain type of language which isn’t recognised as spam.

As more and more listeners shared their scam experiences. Jen was made aware that not all scams are threatening and asking for huge amounts of money.

Recently online customers were told to be wary of a fresh wave of scams aimed at tricking people into handing over bank details in a very subtle way.

They involve a customer receiving a text message telling them they have a delivery item that is being held because of an overdue payment.

They are then asked to click on a link to have the mail item released.

It’s been really successful in getting money out of even the most tech savvy among us as social media manager with 2fm, JJ Hartigan can attest.

He shared his experience with Jen on the show, where an initial payment of €2 could have led to him losing hundreds if not thousands of euro.

By following a link in a scam text message JJ had unwittingly signed up to a direct debit payment scheme, with the amount to be paid, completely up to the fraudsters behind the text message.

The fast action of his bank saved the day on that occasion but brought home how misleading and advanced modern day scams can be.

In order to reassure her listeners that there is something they can do, Jen invited Technology editor with the Irish Independent Adrian Weckler onto the show to offer some words of wisdom to worried listeners.

Unsurprisingly Adrian advised that listeners must change their passwords on a regular basis.

He also advised that we check our internet safety and suggested visiting a site called haveibeenpwned.com which allows users to search across multiple data breaches to see if their email address has been compromised.

The main message throughout the show this morning is that scams are not just for the elderly and non tech savvy. In a time when we’re on the net more than ever, it’s never been more important to check our digital safety.

 

If you want to hear any of Jen’s podcasts, Just search ‘Jennifer Zamparelli’ wherever you get your podcasts and subscribe so you don’t miss any of Jen’s conversations or advice.

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