Scammers are constantly evolving to stay up to date with the weakest link in cyber security, humans. Scammers often use human emotions and vulnerabilities to carry out their various types of scams. Student Loan Forgiveness, Romance and Phone scams are the most common types of scams in the past year.
Student Loan Forgiveness Scams
When the big push for student loan forgiveness became more common in 2022 the increase in this type of scam skyrocketed. Scammers will contact their victims via phone or fake application sites and try to obtain personal information like your social security number, and banking information for example. They would present with a sense of urgency, like, act before it is too late. When victims fall for this scam, they would end up paying an expensive “Application fee” which the scammers would profit from.
Scammers will create fake accounts, and identities to trick you into believing that they are someone they are not. Most of the time they will use stock photos for their profile pictures and make excuses for why they cannot meet in person. Once trust is gained, they will ask their victims to send them money, gift cards, or expensive gifts. In 2022, people lost $1.3 billion to romance scams.
Phone scams can come in the form of phone calls, text messages, apps, or QR codes. The scams can be anything from your car’s extended warranty, winning of vacations, or threats. The purpose of all these methods is to make the victim act before they think. They often trick the victim into giving up personal information or financial information.
How to protect yourself against scams?
Be skeptical when someone reaches out to you. Be aware of different zip codes, area codes, and methods of contact. When it comes to unknown callers, do not answer the call, let it go to voicemail. If you do answer hang up the call. Never give any sort of verbal confirmation of the word yes, or any alternative. This could be used in a malicious way of “verbal consent” if it is recorded.
Enable multi-factor authentication on your accounts for multiple layers of security. Look for suspicious methods of payments. Some scams will only take a payment in a specific method, like visa gift cards, amazon gift cards, or crypto currencies. Always keep an eye on your accounts for purchases that could be fraudulent.
If you’re a Queensborough customer and think you may have been involved in a scam, call our Customer Care team at 1.855.QNBTNOW or 1.855.762.8669. You may also reach out to us with any questions by clicking here to view our Contact Us page.
For more information about protecting yourself from fraud, visit our Fraud, Privacy & Security Center.