Every year, fraudsters swindle people, businesses, and even the government out of billions of dollars. The majority of these scams occur through telecommunications, meaning it is more important than ever to stay vigilant to ensure you don’t fall victim to wire fraud.
Types of Fraud
In general, fraud can be defined as any type of deceptive activity that aims to steal or withhold money from its intended recipient. This can be done by failing to share important information, or by providing false statements to potential victims. Although fraud can take on many forms including tax fraud, credit card fraud, or bankruptcy fraud, wire fraud is one of the most common and dangerous used by criminals.
What is Wire Fraud?
Wire fraud occurs through phone lines, meaning scammers can target you on your cell phone with a call or text, through emails or websites, and even on your social media accounts. Because wire fraud is entirely electronic, many scammers cross state and country borders in an attempt to steal information or have victims wire them money. In fact, wire fraud has become one of the fastest growing cyber crimes because of how easy it is to commit-and how difficult it is to trace.
The Growth of Wire Fraud
In the last few decades, technology has made exponential progress. While this has made our lives easier in many ways, it has also opened up the door to new online threats. Years ago, criminals attempting to swindle people out of money did so by making hundreds of phone calls in the hopes that someone would fall for their scam. Now, those same fraudsters have drastically increased their reach, and are capable of reaching thousands of individuals via email or text message in just a few simple steps.
One of the most famous examples of wire fraud is the “Nigerian Prince” scam, in which criminals pose as royalty and promise victims wealth and riches. The only catch is that they need access to your bank account to complete the transaction. Recognizing these scams for what they are is one of the most paramount ways to keep you and your investments safe, but it’s not the only form of wire fraud prevention.
Preventing Wire Fraud
Unfortunately, money lost in wire fraud scams is nearly always impossible to recover, especially if the scam originated overseas. Because there is little hope for victims after it has occured, the main tool to combat wire fraud is preventing it from ever occurring in the first place. Some tips that can help you avoid wire fraud include:
- Avoid Suspicious Links. Clicking on links or emails you don’t recognize can be risky, as fraudsters can hide malware intended to steal passwords or other information in them.
- Don’t Use Free Email Services. While convenient for personal use, many free email providers lack the security of professional alternatives, and may be putting you and your information at risk.
- Use Protective Programs. Because wire fraud scams are constantly changing and evolving, it can be difficult to stay on top of the latest tactics. Consider utilizing firewalls, antivirus programs, and secure methods for sending or receiving money or sensitive information.
ClosingLock Keeps You Safe
ClosingLock is the industry-leading solution for securely sharing wire information. ClosingLock boasts a user-friendly interface and numerous integrations, preventing wire fraud while also being easy to use. Contact us today to see how we can keep you and your business safe!