Many people use Gmail on a daily basis to check their email for the latest news and updates from their colleagues. However, scammers use email inboxes to trick their victims into opening their emails so that they can steal their money and information. Scammers are creative and have come up with many sneaky ways that they can trick someone out of their personal and financial information. Whether they use phishing links in their emails or have victims reply directly to their email, here are the top 5 ways that scammers trick their victims into Gmail scams.
The Top 5 Gmail Scams to Watch Out For!
Fake Log-In Screen
Scammers pretend to be a victim’s loved one and come up with an excuse as to why the victim should click on the phishing link in the email. The victim falls for the excuse and clicks on the link to find that it took them to what looks like a Gmail log-in screen. The victim enters their log-in information, thinking that they have to log in to their Gmail account again, but instead they are actually giving their log-in information to a scammer. The scammer then takes their log-in information and uses it to steal sensitive information, such as their personal and financial information. With this information, they are able to steal thousands of dollars from their victim.
Fake Online Stores
Scammers send email advertisements to their victims that advertise fake online stores with the best deals online. Victims believe these advertisements and click on the links, thinking that these deals are legit. As victims start scrolling through the fake website, they add products that they really like to their carts thinking that they will get these irresistible deals. Once they go to the checkout page, there’s an online form that tells them to enter their sensitive personal and financial information. Once a scammer gains access to this information, they can then gain access to the thousands of dollars that are in their victim’s bank account.
Scammers send emails to their victims, claiming that they will blackmail them if they don’t receive the requested money. They claim that they have embarrassing photos and videos of their victim along with their loved ones’ contact information. Sometimes, scammers will even claim that they caught you watching pornographic material then took photos and videos of you watching explicit content. This scares victims into giving the scammer anything they want, including their sensitive personal and financial information. Unfortunately, this information isn’t enough for the scammer, so they keep bugging their victim until they become bankrupt with no more money to give.
Scammers claim that their victim won something through an email message and that they need to click the link in order to receive their prize. Their victim becomes flattered that they actually won a contest, even though they didn’t sign up for anything, and click on the link within the email message. The link directs them to a fake website that instructs victims to fill out their personal and financial information in order to claim their prize. The website claims that they need their victim’s financial information so that they can supposedly pay a small shipping fee to have their prize shipped to them. However, this is just another lie scammers tell so that they can steal thousands of dollars from their victim.
Technical Support Scams
Scammers send an email to their victims pretending to be tech support and claim that their computer has a virus on it. They tell their victims that they can fix their computer for them if they call a certain number listed on the email. The victims call the number listed on the email and think that they are actually talking to someone from tech support. They download a program that allows the scammer to access their computer, and the scammer finds the victim’s personal and financial information. If a scammer can’t find their victim’s personal and financial information, they trick it out of their victim by claiming that the victim has to pay for tech support services. Then once they get their hands on their victim’s information, they drain their bank account out of thousands of dollars.
How to Avoid Gmail Scams
- Never give out your personal or financial information to someone over an email or to an unfamiliar website.
- Do your research before shopping at a particular website to make sure it’s legit.
- Do not click on links in any unfamiliar email! These links can lead you to fake websites that more than likely contain malware.
- Don’t call any phone numbers on emails that seem unfamiliar to you.
- If you have been blackmailed, contact your local authorities and block the sender immediately. Do not respond to extortion emails.
- Don’t log in to your account through links sent to you via email. Always go to the direct website yourself to log into your account.
- Report any scam that you have been a part of to the FTC or IC3 for more resources on how to recover from Gmail scams.
Social Catfish is Here to Help You with Gmail Scams!
At Social Catfish, we want to help you verify the identities of those who might seem suspicious to you. If you have their name, email address, phone number, social media username, or image, you can reverse search and see who the suspected person was that you’ve been in contact with when figuring out how to avoid Gmail scams.