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Sharon B
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Sharon B   My Press Releases

Don't Fall for These Scams on Valentine's Day

Published on 2/14/2013
For additional information  Click Here

I just read this and decided to share it here on IBO. For those celebrating today, please stay safe and keep your common sense in tact. This Valentine's Day, Fall in Love and Not for a Scam by Christopher Elliot I don’t open electronic greeting cards anymore, no matter who they’re from. Secret admirers make me suspicious, as do emails offering discounted flowers or candy. How did I become a Valentine’s Day scrooge? Easy. I started covering scams, which opened my eyes to a world of criminals who prey on us at our weakest moments. Valentine’s Day is one such time, unfortunately. We hope for a romantic message from a lover, and the bad guys know it. We want to believe, and they have us where they want us. Here’s how to avoid these common Valentine’s Day swindles. The Bogus Greeting Card: Beware of emails containing links to bogus cards. Scammers hide lines of malicious code in greeting cards, sometimes unbeknownst even to the people sending the messages. How can you tell if it’s harmful? Look for files like “e-card.zip” or “postcard.zip” or anything ending in “.exe” – those are executable files that must be installed on your PC. My advice? Delete the card and send the person a note that you can’t open a greeting card with a .zip file in it. Scammy Facebook Offers: Beware of “themes” that can be downloaded from Facebook around this time of year. The last big Valentine’s Day scam was a theme, which downloaded a malicious browser plug-in that served ads whenever you logged in to your Facebook profile, automatically liked random Facebook pages, and posted spam on your friends’ walls. This year, the criminals are bound to get smarter. Do yourself a favor: Install nothing, even if it looks harmless. The Mail-Order Bride/Girlfriend Scam: One of the most enduring scams – enduring, because it works – is the mail-order bride swindle. It targets middle-aged men in the United States who want to marry foreign women. The romance progresses by email, and at some point the women ask them for money for an airline ticket and visa. After the cash is wired, the women disappear, along with the money. I've personally tried to help several victims of this scam, but by the time they realize they've been taken, the scammer has vanished. All the more reason to keep trying to look for love at home and never, ever wire money.
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