Washington, DC - Tonight, ghouls and goblins will knock on your door looking for candy. However, millions of people are allowing far more insidious creatures inside their homes - and the goodies these monsters want include personal and financial information, as well as your hard-earned cash.
Halloween is the perfect time to remind consumers of "The Scariest Scams on the Internet." The Digital Citizens Alliance's Internet Security Fellow Garth Bruen has compiled information on the most common scams high-tech con artists are running now. He has also included tips on how you can protect yourself if you are a target of one of these dangerous activities:
- Loan Modification Fraud - bad mortgage deals designed to cheat people out of their homes;
- Phishing - fake emails from banks designed to steal your password;
- Malware Downloads - a ghost in the machine lurking to steal your identity and your data;
- Fake Prescriptions - people looking for pharmaceuticals find a deal that looks too good to be true online... and it probably is;
- Online Dating - whether because they are too trusting or too hopeful, some online daters are easy targets for the savvy online con.
"People are often familiar with one of the scams on our list, but not all," said Bruen. "The protections you installed last year may not work again this year. It is important to highlight the problems that are out there so consumers can research the problem and make good decisions when they are online."