How to protect from scammers stealing paychecks or social security
Most of us direct deposit our work or social security checks. But according to Collier County Sheriff’s Office, scammers have found a way to redirect people’s money to their own accounts.
We looked at how to recognize if a personal account is being targeted.
How it works: An email will get sent to someone that looks like it from their place of work, maybe human resources or payroll, asking for details of where that person wants their money sent. The email will come with a link for them to click on.
But it’s a phishing scam. If that link is clicked and the personal information is submitted, the paycheck gets rerouted to the scammer’s account.
Seargent Brian Sawyer with CCSO shared ways to protect and prevent a situation like this.
“The best way to do it is to take your time,” Sawyer said. “Analyze each thing you get. A criminal is not going to tell you, ‘I’m a criminal. Give me your money.’ They’re going to try and impersonate somebody that you’d be willing to give your money or information to. So by taking your time and making sure an email or text message or phone call is from a legitimate person can save you from being a victim of a scam.”
- Remember not to click links or open attachments in unsolicited emails
- Never share personally identifiable information
- Use secure transaction
- Don’t be pressured to act immediately
- Contact your company and your bank immediately if you think you’ve been targeted
- Report the attempt to law enforcement and the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center
- FBI: Internet Crime Complaint Center
- IRS warns of fake wire transfer emails
- FTC: Consumer Sentinel Network [PDF download]
- CCSO: Crime Preventive page