So I woke up this morning to a phone call from my sister. She left a message saying she had some really good news and to call her back! Apparently she won the Irish Lottery! Knowing I’ve won the Irish Lottery several times, I immediately called her.
My sister hasn’t had a lot of luck since moving down to Texas. She’s been in two car accidents, she lost custody of her kids for smoking pot, and now she’s living over her means, especially now since she has to pay $400 every two weeks to help take care of her kids while she takes parenting classes. Her husband is in Iraq.
But for the moment, she was happy
She went on with the disbelief she won millions! I asked her how she won, and she said she got an Email from Irish Lottery Officials.
I couldn’t believe she actually thought she won. How could she not know this was a scam? Then I remembered, she’s just experiencing new things in life. And now it’s time for internet scams.
I remember the time when I won millions online. All I had to do was give away my bank account information, and I would get two million dollars! After that I would have to transfer certain fees and what not, and I could keep the rest!
And the time when I found out I had a rich relative in Nigeria die, leaving me his fortune. Seventy-thousand isn’t like winning the lottery, but who cares, its money right!?
And what about the time I was asked to send $1500 via Western Union for a laptop I won off eBay! I can trust a guy who has 500+ positive feedback right? Why would he lie to me? It’s not like he stole someone’s account and is using it to scam people.
Oh! And what about the time, my Paypal account was going to be suspended if I didn’t update my contact information. All I had to do was login and correct a couple things. Why not follow the mysterious link with an IP address to a foreign website. It looked like Paypal to me!
Internet Scams –
My sister was so excited, I felt bad letting her know it was a scam. She told me her plans with the money, how she was going to make all the bad things in her life go away. I wanted to let her go on, but I just had to tell her. It was a scam. My sister still in disbelief, tried to let me know how it wasn’t a scam. She put all her hopes and dreams into this, and it was crashing down with every word I said.
It’s a scam. Sick people, who don’t have a lot of opportunity in the world try to make their money off gullible people, they prey on people’s desire to get rich quick, and the lack of caution when it comes to the internet. A lot of people who have money, especially in America and Europe have a sort of trust in people; they’ve never experienced a scam or fraud in their life. There are so many ways people try to scam you daily. The most popular ones are identity theft. All you have to do is log into the wrong website and scammers haveÂ all your information.
People don’t know that you can easily fake a website’s design to look like the original. People don’t know that once you send money by western union, there is nothing making the seller send your items. People don’t know winning online lotteries are fake; at least not my sister.
But then I remembered, just like driving, my sister is new to the internet. I can see how lucrative the fraud business is. Sadly I know a lot of people who’s been a victim of online fraud. I my self have lost thousands from Paypal and eBay.
Just remember never to click on a link from an email you receive asking you to update your account information. Always open a new browser, and enter the full address of the website you’re trying to reach. Many phishing emails ask you to follow a link within the email, which is a link to a fake eBay, or Paypal, or banking website that is meant to fool you. Everything about the site will look real, except the URL. You’ll notice an IP address where eBay, Paypal, or your bank name is supposed to be.
If you ever receive an email stating you won the lottery. It’s fake. I don’t see how my sister thought it was real, but most people should know this already. How do you win something you never knew existed? They’ll promise the world to you and more. It’s all lies, trying to draw you into their trap. These people are good. Just delete the email and move on.
Never send someone money through a payment system that makes it impossible to get a refund. Western Union is a very popular way scammers get their money. Once you give someone the call number to you Western Union money, it’s over. Unless you trust the person, there is nothing making the seller give you what you paid for.
When accepting funds from Paypal or any other payment processor, always be on the look out for things that don’t add up; this is how I lost a lot of money. Someone would pay for a product I sale. And since my items or virtual, they’re instantly transferred to the buyer with no luck of getting the item back. Most scammers take advantage of fast items like this because you can scam a website, get your item, and resale for profit within the hour. The only way to combat these types of scammers, are to verify each buyer first. Your best weapon is to do a phone call. Call the buyer to their confirmed address. If the buyers confirmed address is in Austin, Texas, but the area code for the buyer’s phone is in California, you might have a scammer. Another way to verify a buyer is to track their IP address. Every computer has an IP address. If you’re selling products from your own website, you can easily pull someone’s IP address every time they reach your website. If you can trace their ip to their confirmed address, that’s one more positive step in confirming them.
There are a bunch of little signs that tell you a buyer is legitimate or fraudulent. An email address is a sneaky way of seeing what the real person’s name is. Ask the buyer to send you an email, take notice of the name of the email address owner. Most people set this up with their real name. If their name doesn’t match up with their payment details you could have a scammer. Another way is to do a reverse phone look up. This works for most American and Canada buyers.
There are a lot of ways you can confirm a person is legit. These are just a few.
It’s a crappy world we live in. You’ll always find people trying to take advantage of other people. Stop and think before you take action next time. When in doubt, get the hell out of there! 🙂
I guess in short, when you receive an email from the Irish Lottery saying you won millions of dollars. Don’t be gullible, it’s fake.