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How to Avoid Instagram Scams

By on 2022-06-08 17:04:01, 0 Comments

How to Avoid Instagram Scams

Just like any other social media platform nowadays, Instagram is also prone to scammers. With Instagram being one of the most popular platforms being used by many, numerous fraudsters are lurking in the shadows, always on the hunt for their next victim. Instagram scams occur when people create fake accounts or hack existing Instagram accounts that you follow. Fraudsters use these fake or compromised accounts to trick you into giving them your money or personal information.

Here are some things to watch out for when looking for scammers:

  • People who ask you for money when you don’t know them personally. 
  • People who ask you to send them money or gift cards to obtain a loan, prize, or for some other type of profit.
  • Anyone who asks you to pay a job application fee.
  • Accounts representing large companies, organizations, or public individuals that have not been verified.
  • People who claim to be Instagram security require you to provide account information (such as a username or password) or offer verification services for your account.
  • People are asking you to move your Instagram conversation to a less public or less secure setting, such as a separate email. 
  • People who claim to have a friend or relative in need.
  • People who misrepresent their location.
  • Messages that appear to be from a friend or company you know, asking you to click on a suspicious link.
  • Accounts with a brief history on Instagram.
  • Messages that contain a lot of misspelled words and grammatical errors. 
  • People or accounts asking you to collect a prize.
  • People or accounts that offer items at a big discount.

It is important to take note that Instagram will never send you direct messages about your Instagram account. To help you identify phishing and spam emails, you can view official Instagram emails sent from your Settings in the last 14 days.

Learn more about how to keep your Instagram account secure.

If you see something that you think is a scam, you must avoid responding to it and immediately report the scam on Instagram instead. When reporting, you should not be worried because your report is anonymous, unless your report involves intellectual property infringement. The account you report does not see who is reporting it.

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 Educating yourself is the most important defense against scammers. Learn the different types of scams that offenders will try to lure you into:

  • Romantic Scams: Romantic scammers send romantic messages to people they don’t know, often pretending to be divorced, widowed, or in trouble. They engage in online relationships that claim they need money for flights or visas. Their goal is to gain your trust so that conversations can continue for weeks before they ask for money. Watch out for conversations with people you don’t know in real life. 

 

  • Lottery fraud: Lottery fraud is often created from accounts that claim to be someone you know as an organization (such as a government agency or social media platform). The reports will indicate that you are one of the lottery winners and that you will receive your money with a small fee in advance. A fraudster may ask you to provide personal information, such as your physical address or bank details, that he or she may use for other criminal activities.

 

  • Loan fraud: Loan fraudsters send messages or comment on messages offering direct loans at a low-interest rate for a small down payment. Once the initial payment is made, they can ask for more money to make a bigger loan or simply end the conversation and disappear with the payment. Don’t transact with people you don’t know.

 

  • Investment fraud: Fraudsters can promise unrealistic monetary benefits, such as offering a small amount of money to transfer to a higher amount (for example $ 100 = $ 1,000) and asking you for money. This false promise of return on investment will result in the fraudster’s disappearance along with the payment. Some types of bogus investment fraud to look out for include cash flips, Ponzi schemes, or ‘get rich quick schemes.

 

  • Job Scams: Job scams use fake job offers to try to obtain your personal information or money. Avoid messages that sound too good to be true or that require prepayment. When you click a link to a feature report, beware of websites that do not appear to be associated with the original feature report or require sensitive information (for example government ID), but do not use secure (https) browsing.

 

  • Credit card fraud: Fraudsters use stolen financial data to make online purchases or entice others to buy goods or services at a lower than market price. If you notice suspicious activity on your credit card, you should report it to your financial institution or local law enforcement policy.

 

  • Paid Subscription Services: Fraudsters offer the sale of paid subscription services as lifetime access to paid one-time subscription services. Avoid purchasing subscription-based services from anonymous third parties because fraudsters will not deliver the product or the product will not work as intended.

 

  • Phishing scam: Phishing is when someone tries to gain access to your Instagram account by sending a suspicious message or link asking for your personal information. When he logs into your account, a fraudster can gain access to things like your phone number or email address. They can also change your password and lock you out of your account.

 

  • Fake sellers: Fake or misleading sellers may try to use low-priced goods to lure buyers into fraud. They may try to create a sense of urgency so that buyers can move quickly, demand payment by unsafe methods, or incorrectly state their location in their reports.

Another way to protect yourself is to use a people finder service like Kiwi Searches. Kiwi has access to millions of data that can give you the information you need about someone. If you think someone is trying to scam you, simply run their name on Kiwi Searches and you can verify if the information they give you is true and correct.

If they gave you a fake name but you were able to get a number from them, Kiwi Searches also offer a reverse phone number search. This feature gives you the same information as if you just searched for someone by name.

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