WhatsApp scam alert – Refrain from sharing your details online!
It is not surprising that scammers will use the latest technology to rip you off. You might be surprised at how many scams are carried out via WhatsApp apps.
In this digital world, everyone has a smartphone, and with the help of the internet, everyone is connected. There has been a boom in social media platforms, and many have started posting their details on them.
It is not difficult for a scammer to track down their victim online and make them a victim of their scam. We have listed below a list of scams that are quite common among scammers.
Impersonating a loved one
Many seniors fall for this WhatsApp scam, where a message from an unknown person messages you and asks for cash quickly since they have fallen victim to someone else’s wrongdoing.
These scammers will impersonate your child or someone near and dear to you and say that they need some money to pay a hefty fine or have been involved in an accident.
If you get such shocking news, you should contact the person directly and verify with them instead of opening up your wallet and paying these scammers.
Verification code scams
Scammers will send a message to your mobile number and ask you to share the verification code that has been sent to your number. Once they get the verification number, they will hack into your WhatsApp application and start extorting you for money, or worse, lock you out of the account.
Fake gift cards and surveys
If you ever receive a link on WhatsApp asking you to fill out a form to be entered to win some special gifts, or if someone asks you to take part in a survey, please do so.
Avoid revealing sensitive information because the possibility of mischief cannot be ruled out, and you could become a potential victim of an identity scam.
If you get a message that says you have won a special gift or have been selected as a lucky winner, it is best to avoid proceeding further. It is one of the fake gift card and survey WhatsApp scams.
It should be clear to you that since you have not participated in any sweepstakes or competition, how are you then entitled to a gift or to be a part of a lottery? It is a clear case of identity theft fraud, and you should avoid it.
It is one of the most common types of scams, and many have fallen victim as a result. Scammers start by luring their victims onto a dating app. These scammers will give their numbers to WhatsApp accounts and start conversing romantically.
Once the victim’s trust has been gained, the conversation quickly shifts from romantic to financial advice, compelling the victim to invest heavily in cryptocurrency.
After that, the scammers will ask the victim to send in all their cryptos to their crypto account, where the money will quickly double. Unfortunately, it is the last time the victims will be in touch with the scammer, as they will disappear with the victims’ money
QR code scams
This WhatsApp scam is similar to a lottery scam. To receive the prize money, you need to pay a small processing fee. Scammers will send a QR code and ask their victims to pay some money. Once the scammer gets the money, they block their victim.
Tech support scams
Scammers will pose as WhatsApp tech support agents, complete with fake profile pictures and so on. They will attempt to steal your credit card information or ask you to transfer a fee in the form of cryptocurrency.
They will disguise their intention of updating their user base data for an enhanced experience and, to make it so, would like you to reveal your sensitive information to them.
Refrain from making such a mistake, as you will likely fall victim to an identity scam and other financial theft.
Many fall victim to WhatsApp frauds, especially seniors in our society. It is better to confirm any financial message with someone you trust rather than seek confirmation from an unknown person who has messaged you.
It is also recommended that you not share your personal information with a random person you meet online.
How to spot WhatsApp scams
WhatsApp frauds are increasingly becoming more elegant, making them harder to identify if you don’t know exactly what to beware of.
Fortunately, most tricksters use similar methods, and learning which ones these are can lower your chances of falling prey.
Most WhatsApp scams involve messages that:
- Ask you to take immediate action. Fake messages are often alarming, saying your accounts are blocked or a government agency will take official action against you.
- Includes grammatical errors. Text messages from legal businesses (like banks) won’t have any spelling mistakes. If you get a message that consists of errors and incite you to take action on a personal account or follow a website, which is most likely fake.
- Come from unknown numbers. Perform a quick Google search to ensure that the number from which the message was sent corresponds to who they claim to be. You may discover that the number is not associated with the company or agency mentioned in the text.
- Say you’ve won a random giveaway. Some WhatsApp spam messages state you’ve won a prize in which you didn’t participate. They ask you to share personal information to claim your prize or click a link for more details.
- Includes unfamiliar links. Spammers can use links to hack your device or guide you to a fake site designed to steal your data. Be careful of links from numbers you don’t identify or that opens to websites you’ve never visited. Some sites might look familiar, but if you look carefully, they might have spelling mistakes and extra letters or numbers.
- Are sent from an unusually long phone number. Receiving an offer from an unidentified 11-digit number will possibly lead to a scam. Marketing texts are typically sent from six-digit phone numbers, also called six-digit codes or SMS short codes.
Some con men might also contact you through WhatsAppalthough it is uncommon. Demand which company they represent in such a case.
Then, contact the company or agency to validate what the callers told you. If the caller threatens you with the safety of a loved one, contact your loved one directly to ensure they’re safe.