We hope this message finds you well! The Community Foundation is now sending twice monthly Scam Alerts and Tips to protect our community.
Tips on Online Scams
It seems there is no shortage of scams. Scammers can be incredibly sophisticated and it can be tough to know when something is legitimate and when it is a scam. The FINRA Foundation, BBB, and Stanford Center on Longevity did a study in 2019 to find out what separates victims from non-victims. 1,400 people who encountered a scam were surveyed. Here are some highlights from the study that can protect you:
Dangers of Online and Social Media Scams
People were more likely to engage with a scammer and lose money when the scam involved an online purchase.
When people were contacted on social media, 91% engaged with the scammer and 53% of people actually lost money.
The study notes, “Because those contacted via digital means (social media and website) appear from this study to have high engagement and victimization rates, consumers should be particularly careful when sending money based on a digital message or ad.”
Scammers are convincing imposters. The study found people were more likely to lose money when they, "felt that the person/organization seemed official."
Scammers will rush you, "Respondents were also more likely to lose money the more they felt under time pressure."
The more people knew about scammers' tricks the less likely they were to fall for a scam.
If you suspect a scam, talk to someone you trust. People who did not talk to someone about the scam were more likely to lose money.
People who did not lose money knew about the methods of scammers, felt something was not rights, and knew about the scam type.