Unfortunately, scammers are getting more creative in convincing people to part ways with their cash. To stay safe, consumers must be alert to new scams that could hurt their wallets and be more cautious when dealing with people they don’t know.
The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) recently warned consumers about a new imposter scam. If you’re not careful, you could give a fraudster access to your bank account or other financial accounts. Find out what you need to know to protect yourself and your money.
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Be aware of this new imposter scam
The CFPB has confirmed a new scam impacting people, especially older adults. Scammers are pretending to be CFPB employees and other government officials to trick everyday people into parting with their hard-earned money.
The fraudsters contact people via phone, video, and email to let them know they’ve won a lawsuit or have an opportunity to participate in a class-action lawsuit. The imposter will then explain that the person must pay taxes or an upfront fee before collecting their money. The scammer may also list other reasons why the person owes money. But the entire made-up story is an elaborate attempt to steal from unsuspecting people like you.
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Imposter scams like this are becoming more common. The CFPB wants to remind consumers that neither the agency nor its staff will ever contact them to ask for sensitive information or to pay money. Be alert so you don’t fall victim to this scam.
Has someone from the CFPB recently contacted you? If you want to confirm whether their reason for contacting you is legitimate, you can call the CFPB hotline at 1-855-411-2372.
How scammers trick you into parting with your money
There are many fraudsters out there who want to make money off of you. You may wonder how scammers can take advantage of you financially. A common tactic that scammers use is to pretend you owe them money. They may tell an elaborate story that sounds convincing.
If you provide personal information or financial details to a scammer, they may charge your credit card or use your private information to commit other fraudulent activities. That’s why you must be aware of red flags so you can shut down a scammer and keep your finances safe.
Three tips to avoid financial scams
Here are some best practices to follow to help you steer clear of scams.
- Contact the company directly: Before providing personal information to someone, contact the company directly to inquire whether they’re legitimately trying to get ahold of you. Most companies aren’t making calls or sending messages to collect payment.
- Avoid clicking links: It’s best to avoid clicking links from someone you don’t know. Scammers use phishing links to collect personal and financial details. A link may appear legitimate at first glance, but it may lead to a phishing website intended to collect your data. If you receive a text message or email with suspicious links, delete it.
- Keep personal information private: You should never provide your Social Security number, credit card information, or other private details to someone by email, text message, or phone. If someone you don’t know reaches out to you and asks for this information, don’t provide it. If something feels off, trust your instincts.
You can protect your personal finances by staying alert to new scams and following these tips.
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