A report has just been released identifying emerging money scams that will occur in 2018 and beyond, warning that scammers are developing new tactics to target first-time buyers’ (FTBs) deposits and consumer cash. (Source: NatWest)
The NatWest Digital Safety 2018 report has pointed out that FTBs “desperate” to own their first home as house prices start to fall in 2018 are vulnerable to scammers.
It is viewed by one example that a hacker could monitor emails sent by a solicitor, impersonate them, and tell buyers that their bank details need to be confirmed.
The report also identified that financial fraudsters could personalise their tactics by monitoring profiles on social media – for instance by seeing a post saying someone had moved to a new home or are about to buy a property.
“People can be very liberal with posting information on social media and might not realise how much they’re giving away,” said the report.
“But to a fraudster the posts can be very helpful in setting up a scam.”
On a related note, scammers are also expected to try installing malicious software on smartphones to spy on would-be victims via APP’s and other links and messages.
NatWest has urged consumers to be vigilant with their information, and that just because someone knows basic personal details such as names and addresses, it does not equate to a genuine request.
It added that a bank or any other organisation will never ask for passwords or PINs over the phone therefore never give it a thought.
The report also warned that customers should never allow remote access to computers or other digital devices when asked to do so on a cold call. Also, to be vigilant about what they disclose on their social media and be careful with updates and security protocols on their mobile devices.
Financial fraud is now the most common crime in the UK, customers need to understand the different types of scams that might emerge in 2018 and how they can best protect themselves. Scammers are always looking for new ways to get ahead. It is now very clear that your personal information is just that ‘personal’ and that you are not obliged to give anyone any information unless you are 100% sure that they are genuinely entitled to it.
New legislation is coming in this May to deal with the retention and control of personal information under the management supervision and enforcement of the Information Commissioners Office which will place even greater obligations on organisations regarding how they record and control their personal data.
Should you ever be asked for personal information on the phone or by email simply have them identify themselves and fully justify why they want the information – and even then, be sure that it is someone you wish to deal with in the first place and check them out thoroughly before you go ahead. Ask them for their details and be sure that they are correct, or if necessary call them back at details you know are correct.
When in doubt DON’T.
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The above post is intended to be informative but does not constitute advice – financial, legal or otherwise. Any opinions given are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the views of Mortgage Finder
THINK CAREFULLY BEFORE SECURING OTHER DEBTS AGAINST YOUR HOME. YOUR HOME MAY BE REPOSSESSED IF YOU DO NOT KEEP UP REPAYMENTS ON YOUR MORTGAGE