It's that time of year again, when scammers are even more abundant than usual. First off, beware of calls from places like Netflix, Amazon or any other account that the caller claims has been compromised. Hang up!  Good chance you are the target of a scam.

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According to the Better Business Bureau, these scammers are very good at making the scam look pretty legit. They are very good at getting people to cough up  personal information they can use to access your accounts. Don't be intimidated into following their instructions.

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They can also obtain you information by having you download some malware masqueraded as "security software".  Or they may direct you to click on a link that asks for your username and password. Once you give them that they have access to your accounts.

The Better Business Bureau has compiled a list of tips to avoid being scammed.

    • Be extra cautious with unsolicited calls, emails, and texts. Don’t be quick to believe claims from unsolicited communications.
    • Understand how businesses handle communications. If you know how disputes and suspicious activity is handled, it will be easier to spot a scam. For example, PayPal clearly states that they will never send you an email asking you for sensitive information like your password or ask you to download attachments or software.
    • Look into the claims. Don’t take action without first verifying the claims. Log into your account or look up the company’s official phone number (check your bill or welcome email) and call them to confirm that there really is a case of suspicious activity associated with your account before you decide what to do.
    • Don’t panic and don’t feel intimidated. Scammers want you to panic. They may use intimidation tactics to pressure you into giving up your personal information or making payments. Legitimate businesses will not intimidate you in this way. Stay calm and think things through before you act.

As always, never give your personal information to strangers. If you aren’t speaking or corresponding with someone you know and trust, don’t give them sensitive information.

(Better Business Bureau)

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