Online scams have been on the rise at an exponential speed since the pandemic as most of the tasks including working and studying have gone online. There is a direct connection between phishing and scams as threat actors often send you a fake email disguised as an authentic one and either ask you to download something or lead you to a malicious website. In this guide, we have identified new ways that can help you to identify online scammers and fraudsters.
Expert Recommended Methods on Identifying Online Scammers
Way # 1: Scan The Email Address
Examine the From field of the letter before clicking on a link in an e-mail or responding. It is divided into two sections: one for the sender’s name and the other (and more importantly) for the actual email address. The sender’s name can be anything, which fraudsters frequently take advantage of by using the name of the organization they’re posing as.
The true e-mail address (the part with the @ symbol) is far more difficult to replace, therefore this is where attackers can make mistakes. The sender’s true address in most scam emails will either have nothing to do with the company being impersonated, or will be similar to the real one but not identical — with one or more characters swapped (for example, the letter “O” with the number “0”), and so on.
Way # 2: Scan The Links In the Email
Always verify what’s behind any hyperlinks or buttons that say “Get a discount,” “Claim your gift,” “Read more,” or any other evident call to action.
You can view the real address of the online site the senders want you to visit by hovering the mouse cursor over the link or button (while being careful not to click by accident). Use a search engine to find the company’s official website and match the URL to the link in the email. Do not open the website if the addresses do not match, for example, if the link is on a different domain (say,.org or.xyz instead of.com).
Way # 3: Scan The Website’s Security Certificate
Some characters are so similar to one another that the untrained eye can easily be fooled. As a result, we recommend that you check who owns the site after you’ve visited it. Consider Google Chrome as an example (in other browsers the names of menu items may differ slightly).
- To secure the URL, click the padlock to the left of the URL.
- Select Connection is secure in the pop-up window.
- If the certificate is valid, click it.
- Ensure that the Issued to field contains the name of the site’s owner.
The padlock denotes that the site has been validated by a third-party authority and that all data sent and received is encrypted. We just received confirmation in the form of a certificate. It’s rather simple to obtain such a certificate, but unfortunately not in the name of another organization. As a result, if the corporation or organization’s name appears on the certificate, it’s usually safe to trust it (just make sure the name is correct).
What if there isn’t a padlock on the door? This means that data sent to and from the site is not secure and can be intercepted not only by the site owners but also by third parties, making it a terrible idea to send sensitive information there.
Way # 4: Scan The Website’s Domain Registration
Using the Whois service, you can get more information about the site domain. It gives you information on all of the current IP addresses and domain names. In the relevant field, type the URL you want to check to see when and by whom the domain was registered. The “Registered On” line displays the domain registration date. You’re dealing with scammers if a site claims to be the official resource of a reputable organization with a long history but Whois states it’s only a few months old.
It’s also worth looking at who owns the domain name. In the “Registrant Contact” section, you’ll find the owner’s contact information. If the company is important, at the very least its name will be displayed, as well as its address, phone number, and other contact information. The resource is untrustworthy if it claims to belong to a huge corporation but Whois shows “Private Person” in the owner field. Sure, it’s legal for an individual to register a domain, but if the site claims to be affiliated with a large organization, it’s suspect.
Way # 5: Scan The Website’s Content
Examine the site more closely: if it only has one or two pages, it’s most certainly a phony. Cybercriminals advertise false Burning Man tickets, defraud crypto investors, and give away PlayStation 5 consoles on such low-cost, easy-to-use websites. News, company history, products and services, partners, and other valuable information are always available on official corporate websites.
Sure, if you’re only going to read an article or watch a video, there’s no need to examine a site so thoroughly. However, if you intend to input payment information, you should do so each time. Is the website’s address unusual? Are there any mistakes or weird design features on the page? Only fill in your information if everything is in order.
Way # 6: Scan With A Real-Time Web Protection Antivirus
The most recommended method of keeping your system secure is to use a real-time antivirus that protects your PC at all times. Systweak Antivirus protects your computer in real-time against all forms of malicious threats. It also includes the StopAllAds browser plugin, which filters unwanted advertisements and safeguards the computer by preventing malware and other types of malicious software from being downloaded or accessed. Systweak Antivirus guards your computer against exploits around the clock, 365 days a year. It boosts the computer’s present performance by acting as a one-stop-shop for all security needs.
It’s quite simple to use. This program has a user interface that is simple to use and can be used by everyone in your household.
Security in real-time. One of the few antivirus systems that can detect potential threats/apps based on how they behave on your computer is Systweak Antivirus.
Light-Weight. Software that consumes the fewest system resources is considered the best because it does not squander your CPU resources.
Ad Blocker. This tool allows you to surf the web while blocking adverts with an ad blocker.
Startup Apps Customization. Users can turn off components that slow down the computer’s startup time.
The Final Word On More Tips For Spotting Online Scammers
I hope these tips and tricks help you to identify malicious actors and prevent yourself from falling into traps. A real-time antivirus is a must-have app that will protect your computer even if you fail to identify the email or website set up by the scammers. And Systweak Antivirus is the best app to protect your PC.
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