WorldRemit, a leading global payments company, has identified the top four money transfer scams occurring in the industry in 2021 that New Zealand residents should look out for.
The four scams include email scams such as taxation scams where scammers are impersonating the Inland Revenue, online dating scams where scammers can play on emotional triggers to get you to send money, online shopping scams such as overpayment scams where scammers ask you to ‘refund’ an overpayment before you realise the credit card has been stolen or a payment receipt is fake, and Facebook impersonation scams including money flipping scams that promise quick money if you invest.
“WorldRemit takes online security very seriously and we understand many of the tricks and techniques behind some of the most popular scams. We want to educate people on what scams look like so that New Zealand residents can understand what to avoid and protect themselves from getting scammed,” says David Dry, Director, Regional Compliance APAC at WorldRemit.
“Always double check who is asking you to send money, and if you are not comfortable with the transaction then don’t pursue it. Also avoid using third party intermediaries, or agents who offer to make transactions on your behalf, and if you need to transfer money overseas, once you have checked the recipient, use a trusted money transfer service like WorldRemit to ensure that your money does arrive in time.”
David shares his top tips to avoid these four popular money transfer scams.
Tips for avoiding email scams:
- Don’t click on links or open attachments in an unsolicited email.
- Check the sender’s email address matches the website address of the organisation it says it’s from.
- Be wary if the email doesn’t use your name and says something like “Dear customer”.
- Avoid emails with a sense of urgency, asking you to act immediately.
- Beware of emails with poor grammar and spelling mistakes.
- Never share personally identifiable information with someone who has contacted you unsolicited. This includes banking and credit card information, your birth date, and Social Security/ Social Insurance numbers.
- Keep your devices updated with antivirus software to protect yourself from any malware.
Tips to avoid online dating scams:
- Don’t trust those asking for you to share money, gifts or your bank account/credit card details.
- Use social media channels and online to see whether their dating profile is consistent with their other online profiles.
- As a general rule, we advise that you shouldn’t send money to someone unless you have met them in person or via video.
Tips for avoiding online shopping scams:
- Make sure that the website has ‘https’ in the URL (the extra ‘s’ is for ‘secure’) and a small lock icon on the address bar. Even then, the site could be unreliable.
- Read reviews about the quality of the merchandise, and make sure you’re not buying cheap and/or counterfeit goods.
- Check on the website for a clear refund policy and method of contact should you have a customer query.
- The website should not include an option to use an IMT to make the payment.
Tips for avoiding impersonation scams:
- Don’t accept friend requests from people you don’t know and have never met.
- Don’t share your password with others.
- When logging in, use two-factor authentication.
- Avoid connecting to public and free Wi-Fi networks.
- Keep your browser and apps updated.
- Add an additional layer of security and use proactive cybersecurity software.