** More to come soon on cybersecurity & cyberscamming **
A chaotic world opens opportunities for scammers to take advantage of people who are stressed and distracted. We are seeing a wide variety of scams that are popping up daily – from spoofed email addresses to phone calls from people misrepresenting themselves – just remember, BE CAREFUL!!! Today’s newest scam is “UPS” calling small businesses to find out if they are going to be closed and if UPS services will be needed. Of course, you must be able to provide your business hours to the public – but this is a reminder to be aware that thieves are out there, so be sure to lock up tight if you are closing down (and every time you leave your building).
Here are some other standard scams to watch out for:
- Emails asking you to confirm your account: NEVER click on a link to confirm your account or password. If a company tells you they need to confirm something, be sure to enter their URL into your browser directly instead of clicking a link.
- Calls asking you to confirm your account: Just like an email, this is often from a scammer pretending to be a company that provides you various services – your email provided, your bank, your credit card company, etc. No legitimate company will ask for your password, social security number, credit card number, or other private information off of a call they have initiated; instead, they will ask you to hang up and call them. If they don’t ask that – tell them you will call them back, look up the legitimate number, call and confirm that they do (or most likely, do not) need to talk with you. Also remember – companies do NOT ask for your entire social security number, so never give it out over the phone. Most companies have moved away from using SSNs; but if they still do, all that should be needed is the last four digits of your number.
- Calls representing services that you may or may not need: This would be what is happening today with calls from “UPS.” While you can’t hide your business hours, this is just a reminder to make sure that your business is as secure as possible as you close.
- Calls or mailings representing a charity request: At this time when our world has so much need – and so many generous people – scammers have even more opportunity to try to guilt you out of your money. If someone calls representing a charity, don’t just commit to a donation (and especially don’t give your credit card) over the phone. Ask them to send you a request that you can then return after reviewing.
There are an infinite number of scams out there, and creative rip-off artists are developing new approaches every day. Here is a list of some of the most popular. Please be careful & smart!