“Reports of Internet-based crimes jumped 33 percent in 2008, according to a group that monitors Web-based frauds. ” An article in Mercury News wire services section says, “The Internet Crime Complaint Center said it received more than 275,000 complaints last year, up from 207,000 the year before.”

With many people out of jobs and searching for quick income on the internet, there is a higher possibility that you might fall in for the internet marketing scam traps. Now more than ever before many internet marketing companies are advertising lucrative incentives because they know that there is a higher possibility of you being lured towards such fast money making schemes or work-from-home ‘easy dollars’.

Protect Yourself and your Identity
Beware, don’t be a victim – always check/search on the internet to read reviews on such offers and programs.
It is your responsibility to research first; do not rush to a decision and fall for minor incentives like “be among the first “100 callers” and get special shipping free or some dollars off the asking price“.
Stop and research first; your best bet is to look up the websites on the internet and perform a search for the company that you are interested in. In most probabilities there are perhaps hundreds or thousands who have fallen in such traps.

The Washington Post had an interesting quiz on how to ‘catch a phish’. Check your awareness here.

SpamCop is one of the online services for reporting spam. SpamCop determines the origin of unwanted email and reports it to the relevant Internet service providers.

If you are in the US, protect yourself by reading resports on the Federal Trade Commission website, which is the nation’s consumer protection agency. The FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection works For The Consumer to prevent fraud, deception, and unfair business practices in the marketplace.

Phishing Emails
Not only the internet scams are increasing, there is a sudden influx of scam emails from Nigeria and the other such emails which announce you as winner of their lotto which you never played and were never even aware of. Don’t you wonder why Nigeria is not a super rich country despite having so many super rich people who die and have no one to inherit the amount of money that can get the whole world out of the economic mess?
These emails are the phishing emails, an attempt to steal your credit card number and also play a major role in identity thefts.

Job / Employment Scams
And now not only the internet scams that you have to worry about but also where all you are sending your resume? Which companies are bogus is sometimes hard to tell but do read the articles below which are an eye-opener:

Right now all the spammers and people who make money duping people know that you are willing to take a risk to make ends meet, but always remember that if it sounds too good to be true – It IS.

Some tips for you:

  • Delete lottery winning/ work from home – ‘easy money’ emails and don’t be curious to click on the links provided, spyware, malicious virus and phishing codes are waiting to pounce on you on your every step.
  • Never click on a link that is not taking you to the company’s original website or if the link has an IP address or an address that looks strange.
  • Change your passwords on the sites you visit often and make your passwords strong.

What would you do to avoid being a victim?