Caution: Email is increasingly being used as a tool for fraud. If you receive an e-mail asking you to send personal information that is not directly related to an actual sales transaction, delete the e-mail, and never send the information!
Free services such as KPLC's Classifieds are often taken advantage of by scam artists. Be aware and savvy: If something sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
Here's a list of some of the popular scams being used to get millions of dollars from innocent buyers and sellers:
- Auction Fraud
- Counterfeit Cashier's Check
- Credit Card Fraud
- Debt Elimination
- Employment/Business Opportunities
- Escrow Services Fraud
- Identity Theft
- Internet Extortion
- Investment Fraud
- Nigerian Letter or "419"
- Third Party Receiver of Funds
Here are ten tips on how to avoid these types of scams from The Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3) -- a partnership between the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the National White Collar Crime Center (NW3C).
- Be cautious if dealing with individuals outside of your own country
- Be wary if the seller only accepts wire transfers or cash
- Contact the financial institution on which a cashier's check was drawn to ensure legitimacy.
- Beware when money is required up front for instructions or products.
- Be watchful of spelling errors, grammar problems, or inconsistent information.
- Be cautious of emails requiring you to provide your personal and/or banking information.
- Be suspicious of any unsolicited email requesting personal information.
- Be cautious if you are asked to ship packages to an "overseas home office."
- Don't open and never respond to spam as this will confirm to the sender that it is a "live" email address.
- If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
For more information from the Federal Bureau of Investigation on internet schemes, click here http://www.fbi.gov/majcases/fraud/internetschemes.htm. For more info on how to avoid being a victim of internet fraud, click here http://www.ic3.gov/preventiontips.aspx.
Contact the Idaho Attorney General's Office
State of Idaho
Office of Attorney General
700 W. Jefferson Street
P.O. Box 83720
Boise, Idaho 83720-0010