How To Spot A Scammer

How To Spot A Scammer

I'm a business coach and over the last year I've witnessed a staggering rise in scams. Almost half of my students fell victim, leading to their Facebook pages being shut down, money drained from their accounts, and their business listings blocked by Google.

Personally, I'm scared.  It feels like the internet is being taken over by evil and good is being pushed aside. My students are getting more and more frustrated and are asking me how to spot a scammer.  So, I took it upon myself to get some good information together on How To Spot A Scammer.



 Always verify the legitimacy of the company. Check for reviews, complaints and ratings from reputable sources like consumer protection agencies and the BBB Scam Tracker. Also, be cautious of unsolicited calls and unrealistic promises.



 Beware of unrealistic deals that sound too good to be true, especially when found on lesser-known or new sites. Shop at reputable online retailers with a history of secure transactions, positive customer reviews and fair return policies.



 Be cautious of unsolicited contact—if called unexpectedly, hang up and call the company directly on a verified phone number. Avoid clicking on suspicious messages and don’t grant remote access to your device.



Recognize and Report Scams

Scammers use different tactics to get victims to fall for their schemes. In some cases, they can be friendly, sympathetic and seem willing to help. In others, they use fear tactics to persuade a victim. Learn about the different scam tactics, and what to do if you suspect suspicious behavior.



Scams start with someone you don’t know: Scams often use fake emails, text messages, voice calls, letters or someone who shows up at your front door unexpectedly.

You’re asked to take immediate action: If you are pressured to end money quickly (like limited time offers) or threatened with law enforcement action, something is likely off.

Don’t agree to complicated payment methods: Examples include purchasing a gift card and giving the code or depositing a check and returning overpayment. 



Tech support: Don't allow remote access to anyone asking to fix computer defects or malware.

Impersonation: Make sure you’re speaking to a legit company and not scammers posing as one.

Online shopping: Research social media marketplace merchants & look for red flags like very low prices.

Payment: Be wary if you’re asked to make a purchase with the promise of compensation.

Employment: Don't apply for jobs with enticing perks when the application wants personal info.

Romance: Be wary of relationships exclusively online with someone who needs financial support.



  • When in doubt, hang up the phone immediately.
  • If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Verify SMS text or email origins.
  • Resist the pressure to act immediately.


Spotted a scam or worried you've been compromised?

There are too many scammers out there for the FBI to keep up with, they need  our help to fight the battle and take back the internet.  Report the scam to the BBB Scam Tracker and the government via the FTC ReportFraud site. You may also want to report scammers directly to the FBI.


Remember, its better to be safe than sorry.  


Stay safe out there,
Coach Trina

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