How Scam-Savvy Are You? Take The Quiz And Find Out!
Online crime has risen significantly in Singapore. Between January and June this year, there were 349 cases of internet love scams, compared to 277 cases in the first half of last year. These scams cost their victims a total of S$22.1 million, with the largest amount cheated in a single case close to S$6 million.
E-mail impersonation scams, on the other hand, rose 29% to 160 cases in the first half of the year, compared to 124 in the same period last year. These scams cost their victims a total of S$21.9 million.
While e-commerce crimes are down by 10.5%, the high number of cases reported still makes them a cause for concern. During the first half of the year, there were 900 cases compared to 1006 in the same period last year. These scams cost their victims a total of S$691,700.
It’s not always easy to spot a scam, as fraudsters use increasingly clever tactics to dupe their victims. Are you savvy enough to sniff out a potential scam? Take the quiz below and find out!
How to spot a scam
How well did you do in the quiz? If you scored badly, don’t worry – here are a few tips to help you spot the next online scam that comes your way:
- Be careful when giving out personal information. Be careful when giving out personal information, especially if you did not initiate the correspondence. Your bank or any other institution that you do business with will not ask you for sensitive data like passwords.
- Be careful when downloading files. Some files contain malicious software that can steal sensitive data like personal information or passwords if opened. Never download a file attached in an email if you’re not sure of the source, especially if it’s a .zip file. Legitimate sources like banks or businesses will usually send you documents physically or in .pdf format.
- Ensure that you make online purchases from legitimate sites. Watch out for unusual URLs (amaozn.com instead of amazon.com, for instance) that could indicate a fraudulent website trying to imitate a genuine one. In addition, make sure the URL includes HTTPS, instead of simply HTTP. A website with HTTPS means that personal information (like credit card data) that you send to the website won’t be intercepted by a third party.
- Be careful of who you meet online. Online dating scammers typically gain their victims’ trust over a period of weeks or months, before suddenly having an emergency that requires financial help. Don’t transfer money to someone until they’ve fully gained your trust – and even then, be wary – someone who genuinely loves you won’t extort you for money.
- Always verify the source of an email. Be wary whenever you receive an email requesting a transfer of money. Verify the source of the email by making a phone call, or by making a quick Google search to check if this is a known scam.