Don’t Fall For It: 4 Online Scams Debunked


It seems like everyone has an online scam story or at least a scare. Here are 4 common online scams and how you can avoid falling for the traps.

The “Free Trial Offer!” (That will end up costing you way more than $0)

Here’s what happens: You see an online offer to try a great product for free, all you have to pay for is the $8 shipping price. What you don’t see is that written in the fine print (usually in a faded color and without dollar signs) are terms that obligate you to pay $100 a month for, well , forever. To avoid this, read all of the fine print. And if any product or offer seems too good to be true, it probably is. If you’ve already fallen victim to this bogus offer, call your credit company and cancel your card immediately.

Wi-Fi Weasel

Public Wi-Fi hot spots can be convenient, but can also make your computer and information vulnerable. Be careful when connecting to unknown Wi-Fi servers, as hackers will set up fake Wi-Fi connections to gain access to all of your information. These people will be in close proximity to you, but you may not even notice that something is up until it’s too late. If you must use the internet, make sure to confirm the server with an employee from the business you’re in. Additionally, don’t make any online purchases or check your banking information while connected to public Wi-Fi.

Tall Tale Tweet

You’re on Twitter and see that someone has reached out to you with an offer to win an awesome, and expensive, prize. All you have to do is click on the link. Don’t do it! Once the link is clicked, a software robot adds your computer to a database of computers that hackers use to send spam email. If you’re not sure whether the link is legitimate or not, check out the user who sent it to you. If they have a ton of spam tweets and zero followers but are following a lot of people, it’s usually a spam account.

You (Will) Have a Virus!

So many people have fallen for this trick. What happens is that you suddenly receive a popup from an “anti-virus” software warning you that you’ve just downloaded a virus, and should perform a scan right away. The popup mimics that of a legitimate anti-virus software, and convinces people that they need to upgrade their software to get rid of the virus they just downloaded. Of course, once you pay for the “upgrade”, your computer stops working. Once the malware is downloaded, it is really hard to reverse the damage. To avoid this, don’t click on any popups advertising anti-virus software. Instead, close out of the popup and perform a virus scan with your trusted antivirus software.

Don’t be a victim of technology foul play!

Call Stratosphere Networks and let us see what we can do for you. We provide a broad range of IT services, including: 24/7 remote monitoring, proactive desktop and server management, email and virus protection, and backup and recovery, to name a few. For more information, call us today at at (877) 599-3999, or click here to use our contact form.

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