It’s 2021, and just like every previous year, it seemed like scammers are just becoming even more prevalent – (New Scams to Watch Out For in 2021) Let’s know about some scams.
So I’m going to go over in this blog a bunch of different scams that are either brand new that I really have never heard of or that are becoming at least more prevalent,
Even if they’re not exactly new. So you still need to be on the watch for them this year.
Car Wrap Scam
So starting off, we have the so-called car wrap scam. And in this one, you’ll either see some kind of job posting or maybe even get an email or see an advertisement for something that claims to be able to pay you to just drive your car around.
And the idea is that you’ll answer this ad and they’ll say, yeah, all you have to do is put an advertisement car, rap logo on your car, drive around like you normally would, and will pay you several hundred dollars a week for that.
If you accept this, they’ll usually send you a check that is a bogus check for a few thousand dollars. It will initially cash in the bank before they realize it’s fraudulent.
But in the meantime, they will tell you, oh, use this money and go to our supplier who’s a specialist in car wraps and just give him the money and pay him and he’ll handle it and they’ll tell you to do this in some way.
That’s not really reversible, like a wire transfer or money order or something like that. At some point, probably not too long after you make this payment to this so-called specialist who just is part of the scam,
Then the bank will realize that the check is fraudulent after a couple of days, and then they’ll deduct that money out of your account because it never should have been deposited.
So then you’re out. But the money that was deposited from the check and whatever money you have sent to the scammer, so you lost it all.
So again, this is just another variation of the fake check scam. Always be wary of any company that says we’re going to send you a check and you go and use that to buy something that’s kind of sketchy.
Family Emergency Scams
Our next up, we have the so-called family emergency scams. You may have heard of these. These have been around for a while, but apparently, they were becoming a lot more prevalent with this one.
You’ll get a phone call claiming to be a relative of yours and they’re in some kind of emergency that requires you to give them money.
For Example – New Scams to Watch Out For in 2021
This is often like they’re out of town on vacation and they just got arrested. They need money for bail, for example, is a common one.
This scam frequently targets older people and then they’ll pretend to be grandkids and they’ll say, oh, grandpa, grandma, I’m in jail, I need bail, or whatever.
And then they’ll also say something like, please don’t tell mom and dad. They’ll be so mad. Please just send the money over now and I’ll sort it out and then tell them.
And the idea is to get them to send the money before confirming this story with anyone to find out if this person is even out of town at all.
So they try to get you to urgently send the money for whatever reason. It’s always very urgent. They need the money now.
Maybe the hearing is tomorrow and they need the money for a lawyer or they need to get out of jail now because I don’t know, they’re scary people in jail, that sort of thing.
And these scammers are more clever than you may think. I saw one post where someone questioned why they sound different. They’re like, you don’t sound like my grandson.
And they said, oh, well, I broke my nose while being arrested. And that’s the reason I sound different. So needless to say, if you ever receive a phone call from anyone,
Even someone, you know, claiming to need money right away and you need to wire the money or something else like that, it’s best to, first of all, not answer any phone call from a number you don’t recognize.
But at least verify the story somehow and know that this is a scam going around. So if you do get a phone call from someone needing bail, it probably is a scam
Fake Amazon & Apple Calls
Moving on. The next scam is fake phone calls from people claiming to be Apple or Amazon support. This is basically a variation of the fake order confirmation scams you may have heard of in the past.
Usually this up until now, they would have been an email. They send you a fake order, a confirmation, and they say to cancel this order, go in here. And it’s a phishing thing.
Well, this is different. They actually call you up on the phone and do a robocall and they may say something like, this is Amazon support and this is alerting you to an unauthorized purchase of an iPhone for a thousand dollars.
Press one to talk to customer service to cancel this. And of course, if you pick up and you’re like, oh, I didn’t or that you press one, you talk to a scammer and then they’ll usually ask for your credentials,
They’ll try to get your bank account number to say, oh, to cancel this, we need your original credit card info, anything like that.
So if you get one of these phone calls, never call the number that they tell you. Just if you’re really unsure about it,
Then go on Amazon or Apple’s official website and contact them through the official number listed on the website. Not some number that a phone call gives you because it could be fake.
As a side note, if you ever get a robocall from this type of scam or any other, never press any numbers on the phone. Just hang up right away.
Because if they hear you press the. No, then they know now that it’s a live working number and then that may be added to a list and you’ll start getting even more and more spam calls.
So it’s best to just not answer if you don’t recognize it and just hang up immediately when you realize it’s a scam. All right.
Overpaid Utility Scams
Now, the next type of scam is the overpaid utility bill scam. And with this one, you’ll get some kind of phone call, usually a robocall,
Maybe a voicemail that will say, hey, you overpaid your latest electricity bill or whatever, and you’re eligible for a cash refund.
All you have to do is press one or call this number to talk to customer service. It might not be a cash refund. They might say, oh, will confirm it and we’ll apply a discount to your next bill, something like that.
Of course, when you press one or connected this customer service, who’s actually the scammer, then they’ll usually require some kind of confirmation for the payment in the form of your bank account number, where to deposit.
We need to know where to deposit the money or something like that. Your personal information that they’ll use to steal your identity, any type of thing they’ll be able to collect from you.
And even in the best-case scenario, where it’s not an outright thief trying to steal your money away, at the best-case scenario,
It’s like a really sketchy marketing company trying to get you to switch to their crap utility company. And they’re basically still lying.
So you don’t want to even interact with them. They’re still using sketchy, lying marketing tactics. So it’s either a scam or someone you don’t want to deal with anyway.
Package Waiting Scams
Moving on. I think we’re on a number five. We have these so-called package waiting scam.
And what’s new about this is they’ve been actually sending out text messages where previously it’s a variation of the kind of like a fake order confirmation email you receive, like I mentioned before.
But now you may start getting text messages and they may even know your first name or something from data brokers and that sort of thing.
And they’ll say, oh, you have a package waiting from us or from Amazon. Click this link to find out more and how to receive it, that sort of thing.
But then if you do click the link, it’s going to take you to what looks like a login page for probably Amazon or whatever website they’re saying they’re from.
But of course, it’s a phishing page and they’re going to immediately steal your credentials and then use it to order from your real account and then take your money that way.
But again, if you receive one of these, never click the link. Even if you know it’s a scam. You’re curious what the website’s going to look like.
Don’t do it, because they definitely have trackers on those links to know who is clicking the links and who’s not.
And then you’re going to start to get even more text message spam because they know you’re a working number, so just don’t even do it.
Next up, we have really a whole category of scams which are known as income scams generally.
And these have become so much more prevalent in the past year that even the FTC has started a new campaign to spread awareness called Operation Income Illusion, to let people know that these scams are becoming more common.
These scams come in all sorts of shapes and sizes. Actually, that car wrap scam we talked about in the beginning was basically a form of this.
But usually, you’ll see some kind of job posting or maybe an advertisement on social media.
You may even get an email and basically, it’ll claim, oh, work from home and you’ll make all sorts of lots of money in a short amount of time.
And it’ll basically be something that’s just too good to be true. And regardless of the pretext, they used to get your attention, they may take your money in any sort of a number of ways.
They may, again, do like the fake check scam and say, oh, for this job, you’re required to go out and buy a printer or something from our supplier.
They may say it’s an investment opportunity or a business opportunity. Oh, you’ll start your own business and you’ll be using our proven business method, that sort of thing.
And of course, you have to put your money in, but you’ll never, ever get anything out of it. But usually, with these, the common thread is they’re going to require you to put in your own money upfront somehow.
And then, of course, they’ll disappear right after I said several times, it’s like a fake check scam. So they’ll kind of hide the fact that you’re using your own money but really are.
Or maybe, again, it’s like some kind of multilevel marketing thing where you have to buy the product before you sell it. But with all of these, you can just kind of ask yourself,
Wait a minute, if they’re going to say they’re going to reimburse me for go out, buy this thing, why don’t they just go and buy it themselves? And that’s obviously because it’s a scam.
Covid Relief Scams
All right. Up next, the next category of scams are coronavirus relief and stimulus scams.
Basically, with the combination of the United States tax season coming up and talk of stimulus bills, there’s a lot of opportunities for scammers to take advantage of people.
One common tactic is scammers will contact you in any number of ways, whether it’s email, text message, phone call, or whatever, and they’ll say, hey, you’re now eligible.
Congratulations to get your stimulus check of 2000 dollars, whatever. And all you need to do to claim it is X, Y, Z, and then they can steal your money or personal information in any number of ways. After that,
For Example – New Scams to Watch Out For in 2021
They might say, hey, your coronavirus check is ready. We just need your bank information to deposit it, maybe your bank account number or your bank login.
And then, of course, they’ll go in and drain it if they can, or they may contact you and say, hey, to even receive this coronavirus check, you’re going to have to sign up to even be eligible. You’re not signed up yet.
And then they give you a link to some Web site, of course, that is going to either steal your information and use it to steal your identity or they might again steal your bank login, stuff like that.
If you’re curious about whether or not you’re eligible, get some kind of stimulus or when it’s always best to just stick to official news sources, I think there’s plenty of news.
Outlets out there that are official for your local news or national news that will tell you and describe who’s eligible if you have to sign up at all, I don’t think you really have to.
And you don’t have to rely on these sketchy emails that come and you don’t know who they’re from.
Are now, the final type of new scam we’re going to talk about are vaccine-related scams.
I’m not talking about the vaccine itself being a scam, of course, but the FBI and state and local governments have said that scammers have been using the vaccine as an excuse to lure people in, to scam them in any number of ways.
And you may come in contact with these scammers in any number of ways. You might see an advertisement on social media. You might get a text message again, an email, the ones we’ve talked about.
And then if you click the link or respond to the ad, they’ll probably,
For Example – New Scams to Watch Out For in 2021
Either try to get you to put in a whole bunch of personal information, say, hey, to sign up to be put on the vaccine list, you have to give us all your information,
Your Social Security number, your bank info for payment, or anything like that. Or they might say, oh, you need to put in your credit card number to pay the processing fee.
Another Example – New Scams to Watch Out For in 2021
I’ve heard is they may try to say, hey, if you just pay us a fee, we’ll get you to the front of the line. You can get the vaccine first. Again, that’s a scam.
There’s no way to pay to get to the front of the line. Now, again, your state or local government may actually have an official way to sign up to get the coronavirus vaccine.
So always go, though, to your official state or local government’s website and look for information on there about how to do that.
Don’t be signing up by clicking on links for social media or unsolicited emails you receive,
But just be aware that it’s a scam so you can kind of just double check if you get an email and double-check that it did come from an official source.
And again, you can always just go on the official website and don’t click any links if you want to be sure.
So hopefully now you’re better prepared for these scams that I mentioned that are more prevalent now. Or you might be able to recognize similar scams like, hey, that sounds a lot like that other scam might just be a variation of it.
And you can be, well, more prepared going forward. If you guys want to keep reading, I’d recommend reading the blog on the computer that drives A and B. You can just click on that right here.
So thanks so much for watching us. And we’ll see in the next blog.
Good Bye 🙂
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