ONLINE scams are becoming more sophisticated and putting your hard-earned money at risk.
If you’re worried about your online safety, we have some tips that can help you stay safe.
A large part targets you via email, usually claiming to be popular services like Facebook and Google.
Luckily, there are some telltale signs to look out for that could save you a devastating blow to your bank account.
Check links in emails for scams
The biggest giveaway anyone can be aware of are web addresses and links.
You would expect something like Facebook to go to a page on facebook.com while Google on google.com.
Scammers usually use obscure web addresses that contain the company names but are not official.
So, this is what you should watch out for as an immediate warning sign for links.
Ideally, you should verify the links by hovering over buttons or calls to click before actually clicking on them.
This will bring up the web address so you can see if it’s the real deal.
The same applies to the e-mail address of the sender.
Pay attention to accents and periods in web addresses
Official emails are usually short and again include the official web address.
If an email comes from something like email@example.com, something is clearly wrong.
Also, watch out for tiny accents and dots in non-English languages, which can be quite hidden at first glance.
For example “gọọgle” – did you notice the two dots under the os? This is suspicious and will not take you to the official Google website.
Check shortened web addresses
Today there are many web address shortening services designed to make long links appear a little shorter.
They essentially act as a mask that redirects you to another location once you visit them.
Many are legitimate, but they are also obviously vulnerable to abuse.
Luckily there is a site called Check the short URL which reveals the real web address so you can see if it’s safe or a scam.
After getting the real address, apply the same principles as above to find out if it’s good to go.
Go through official sites yourself
If you think an email might be genuine or you are unsure, it is best to ignore the email and manually go directly to the official website.
If it’s genuine, what was mentioned in the email will surely appear right there in your account – and at least then you’ll know you’re on the right page.
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https://www.thesun.ie/tech/8334767/facebook-google-fake-links-in-emails-warning/ Millions of Facebook and Google users need to learn four tricks — or it could cost you