Phishing is at an all-time high. This is where scammers try to get any type of sensitive information in many different ways to use to steal from a business or a person. They will use means such as breaking into email by stealing passwords in hopes to find information in the email, or to use the email for more phishing scams by pretending to be you when they’re not. You can protect yourself if you understand the various types of fraud that is targeting your business.
Over Payment Trick
This scam requires that the scammer buy expensive items and overpay by check. When the business gets the over payment, they are then asked to just send the over payment back to them via wire transfer. Of course, the first check is cancelled, no order is made and now the business is out the money they transferred to the fraudster.
Usually these are messages that look to be sent by a real company but aren’t. They will download a virus onto your computer that will get the details of your bank and other private information that you don’t want them to have.
Someone informs you that your business has won an award. But of course you have to pay a membership fee to get the award and you’ll be charged this membership fee, usually every single year. There is no real organization and it’s just a way to get your money.
This happens to a lot of online businesses, whether they sell information products or physical products. Someone uses someone else’s credit card to buy a lot of merchandise which they then either return or sell to someone else.
Often scammers send business owners fake bills to trick them into thinking they owe the money. This happens with domain renewals and other issues that look real when you get them but aren’t real.
IRS / Tax Scams
If you get a phone call from the “IRS” telling you that you owe back taxes and you know that you don’t (and even if you do), this is not how they’ll contact you. The IRS sends letters, and you call them. Not the other way around.
Fake Loan Scam
You’ll get a phone call that you’ve been awarded the opportunity due to the government or the president or some other nonsense to get a special loan for your business at a very low interest rate. These people really only want your personal information; you’ll never get the loan.
These scams and more are quite common, but unfortunately many people fall for them every single day. This is why they are common – they work. If you don’t want to be a victim of a scam, be sure to stay educated on the current scams, research anything that seems too good to be true, and do your due diligence to ensure that information is correct.