Though scams can happen any time of year, tax season can be prime time for fraudsters. That's why it's an especially good time to watch out for signs of fraud. Get to know some common scams, learn how to recognize the warning signs, and find out how to avoid becoming a victim in this guide to staying aware of financial fraud.
Financial fraud can happen to anyone, from senior citizens to young adults. No matter the age of the victim, however, most types of financial scams follow the same general framework. They’re actions designed to deceive the victim while providing the perpetrator with an illegitimate financial advantage.
Financial fraud can take shape in many ways, and recognizing money scams isn’t always easy. Read on to familiarize yourself with some common types of financial scams:
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Since financial fraud can be expensive and difficult to recover from, your best bet is to avoid money scams altogether.
Make a policy of never giving out bank account numbers, credit card numbers, Social Security numbers, or passwords over the phone, especially if you didn’t initiate the call.
It’s also a good idea to research before you act. Read about charities before giving, and only donate through official channels. If you receive a call from an IRS agent, request the person’s agent number, and then call the IRS to confirm it’s legitimate. If you get a call from your bank, take notes and then call your bank directly using a phone number from a known, trustworthy source rather than responding to a solicitor.
Want to learn more about what you can do to help prevent financial fraud? Get more tips here.