Technology gives us a lot of power - right from shopping with the click of a button to making financial transactions. No matter where we are located, we can make payments and complete various transactions. With this, though, we have gotten exposed to many fraudulent activities. Hackers aplenty are out there. Additionally, methods and ploys used for cyber-attacks are constantly evolving as technology advancements occur.
Technology gives us a lot of power - right from shopping with the click of a button to making financial transactions. No matter where we are located, we can make payments and complete various transactions. With this, though, we have gotten exposed to many fraudulent activities. Hackers aplenty are out there. Additionally, methods and ploys used for cyber-attacks are constantly evolving as technology advancements occur. hence, the possibility of scams is also on the rise - one wrong click and you might find that your sensitive data has gotten compromised or you have been duped of a lot of money. Not only across the world, but this is also abounding in India now. How, then, can you stay safe from online scams? Read on to find out the five best ways to do so.
Not all apps are secure - be they gaming apps, apps for dating, or even for shopping. So, you should always remain mindful of the apps that you are using. Ensure their verification, and read their reviews before downloading it onto your phone. Some fintech companies are coming up with countermeasures to prevent banking fraud in India. This said fraud can happen even on verified sites, so one always needs to remain extra cautious. For example, recently, over 100 people were duped of money when they applied for jobs on Amazon, with one woman losing over ₹3,00,000.
Some sites, like Google Chrome, Apple’s Safari, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox, and Opera Mini, have certain built-in security measures, but many others don’t. Hence:
When you are making a payment at a restaurant or after receiving a delivery, always make sure that the swiping happens in front of you. Before giving your card, always check whether it is a genuine card-reading POS machine or a card skimmer in disguise. If it is the latter, you will soon find that all your money has been stolen!
These days, unsuspecting customers often get a call from someone pretending to be a banking agent who asks for personal and classified information. They might also tempt you with free reward points or cash-back offers or tell you that your card will expire soon/get blocked soon. Sometimes, imposters also pose as friends of those who you know. Never entertain such calls. Always remember that you should not share any sensitive information with any third party - bank authorities never call and ask for such data. As of 2022, Truecaller has helped over 24 crore Indians to block and report spam and identify callers. It is always coming up with innovative campaigns to raise online safety awareness and is doing a commendable job at that.
Another thing to be careful of is who you are transferring money to/sharing information with. Always verify the credentials of the person before such sharing.
Unless it is with someone you know, do not grant remote access to your computer. Most likely he is a scammer. Most of the time, these imposters cite reasons like your computer need to be updated or an anti-virus has to be run. However, the moment they have access they will lock your computer and demand ransom for the same. Protect yourself by just not taking such conversations further and hanging up.
Free Wi-Fi can be a temptation - be that at a restaurant, a hotel, or at the airport lounge. It is best avoided as it can lead to your sensitive information getting stolen. Hence, it is best to avoid any public hotspots to make any financial transactions. This is because public networks are easier for hackers to crack, and thus data theft is more rampant.
In this context, you should also always clear the cache after any web browsing session. This is because whenever you surf the Internet, a cache file, which is a temporary file, gets generated, which stores all your information. Any hacker can easily use this to his advantage.
Spam emails and SMS are very common these days. These links might look genuine, but once clicked, they can lead to theft. Such links come in the form of temptation. For example, winning a lottery or foreign jobs. These links usually lead to phishing websites which can rob you of your mobile’s security features. For example:
Year after year, innumerable people become a victim of online scams. The Internet has become one of the most popular tools for committing theft. More often than not, it is because we don’t follow the basic principles of staying safe - keeping software updated, using strong passwords, and not falling prey to temptation. It is time that you become a little more careful so that hackers cannot dupe you anymore. As Amit Das, the co-founder and CEO of Think360.ai, says, ‘Security builds trust, and trust drives acceptance’.
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