The Dangers of Spam's Financial Fraud

Financial fraud is one category of spam that is quickly on the rise, becoming rather significant to the problem on a global scale.  One reason for the abuse is because these unsolicited emails are resistant to the basic filters used by most people.  These programs are inferior at identifying the content or format of financial-based spam.

Spamming for your financials

The increased rate of email related fraud has proved that spammers are more creative than given credit for.  Their techniques have become more sophisticated, making it difficult for some of the most informed recipients to decipher the spam messages from legitimate claims.   

Here are two common types of spam that pose the most serious financial risks:

The Nigerian Sting - These unsolicited emails are often very creative and full of fictitious tales.  Most of them are variants of the original Nigerian scam that revolved around the desperate and needy descendant of a wealthy Nigerian father.  The purpose is to persuade recipients of the email that the sender is financially enabled, but simply in a bad situation.  With aid of the recipient, they will be able to get out of the jam, while kindly offering a large monetary reward; all they need is details of the recipient's account to deposit the money.  From there, the account is completely drained and they move onto another victim. 

Phishing - The methods of spamming have evolved tremendously over the years; Phishing is solid evidence.  It is perhaps the most dangerous form of financial email fraud a user will encounter.  Phishing accounts for greater financial losses than any other scam.  This clever technique thrives on second nature from the user to do what they feel is right.  For instance, you may receive and open an email that appears to be legitimate.  Inside, the sender requests that you click on a secure link and type in your password or access code.  After following the directions, the fraudulent spammer will have direct access to all of your accounts - access you provided them. 

Some scammers are so skilled at Phishing that they can empty out an entire account within a matter of minutes.  A more modest spammer may take a subtle approach and charge a minimal onetime fee.  This allows them to stay under the radar, as many victims may not notice the activity for some time.  A spammer has the ability to accumulate major profits by thieving small chunks of money from numerous accounts.

Protecting your financial information

As destructive as Phishing spam is, it can also be easily avoided.   In actuality, it would be very farfetched for an official financial institution to request such sensitive access information through an email.  The best way to protect yourself from this spam scam is to verify the questionable request by immediately contacting the service that handles your financial endeavors.  

Financial spam continues to soar at an unsettling rate, becoming more difficult for email recipients and filters to detect.  Aside from remaining conscious of the situation, another good solution would be an anti-spam program that is independent of both content and format.

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Spyware has many ways of getting onto your computer, such as:

When you download programs - particularly freeware, or peer-to-peer sharing programs.

More covertly, spyware can install itself just by you visiting certain sites, by prompting you to download an application to see the site properly.

ActiveX controls. These pesky spyware makers will prompt you to install themselves while using your Internet browser