If you have a phone or computer, you are at risk of becoming a target of scammers or con artists. If you have had a recent death in your family, you may be especially vulnerable. Unfortunately, there are people out there who take advantage of available public information. With this data they can trick you in to giving out your personal information or sending money. This is commonly referred to as phishing. Take the time to educate yourself so that you don’t get hooked with their bait.
These scams play to your emotions, which for the bereaved are already in hyper-drive. Add to that the brain fog you’ve probably been experiencing, and you make an easy target. So, be aware that there are unscrupulous people out there that may try to separate you from your money.
Never give out your social security number or that of your loved one over the phone, unless you can verify who you are speaking with. Oftentimes, a social security number is needed, but it’s best not to give it out, unless you have initiated the phone call, and know the number you are calling is a legitimate number to the company you are doing business with. Don’t trust caller ID.
Don’t give out your passwords or any of your banking information to anyone. A bank will not call you asking you to verify your information. If you feel you are the target of a scam, report it to the Federal Trade Commission by calling (877) FTC-HELP or if you would like to know more, go to their website www.ftc.gov .
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