With summer here, many people are preparing for vacation trips. Some people will just drive across the state, others will be flying to new destinations. Vacations are, after all, a great way to take some time for oneself to rest and recuperate. After all, most jobs can be pretty stressful. Getting away for a little while can be very nice.
Unfortunately, not everyone can get away for a vacation. Whether its timing, or a money issue, there are all sorts of things that can keep a person at home during the summer. This means that some people will still be staying home this summer, and this means that people need to be wary of a new scam filling people inboxes.
Phony Ticket Confirmation
As stated before, summer is a travel heavy season. Lots of people are off on exciting adventures, and scammers are well aware of this fact. They aim to take advantage of a person booking a flight on an airline as a way to steal personal and financial information from people.
People have begun receiving emails that appear to be ticket purchase confirmations from large airlines. The problem is, many of these people never bought tickets from those airlines. So they click on the link presented to them in the email address, which takes them to an official looking website where they are asked to login with credit card information. If the person does this, they have just given their financial information over to a scammer.
Now, it is important to remember that official airline websites are still safe. The scammers have not hacked any websites or systems. They are simply sending mass emails to unsuspecting people in the hopes that the person replies or clicks on a link which takes them to the scammer’s own website.
Identifying This Scam
There are a few different ways to identify this scam:
- The email isn’t addressed to a specific person. This is due to the fact that these emails are sent en masse. This means that they are not specifically targeted to one person, and will not have a person’s name, which official confirmation emails usually do.
- The sender’s email address. This may take a little bit of research, but the email will only look like it came from the company’s official email. Scammers often create email addresses that resemble official emails, but aren’t exactly the same.
- The web address isn’t correct. It is never a good idea to click a link from a suspicious email. However, if a person does, the website they are taken to won’t be the official airline’s website. This can be determined by going to the airline’s website manually, without the link, or by looking at the website’s URL. If the URL does not have https, the “s” being the most important part since it denotes that the site is secured, then the site is a fake. Most modern web browsers also put a padlock symbol next to secure websites.
- Didn’t buy airline tickets. This is the most important one. If a person didn’t buy tickets on an airline, they shouldn’t believe any email saying they did. If a person wants to be safe, they can contact the airline’s official customer service center by getting the contact info off the website after going to it manually.
Signs Of A Scam
There are hundreds, if not thousands, of different scams out there that con-artists love to pull on unsuspecting people. It is practically impossible to learn about all of them, and scammers are always coming up with new ideas anyways. This means that the best way to avoid a scam, is to learn how to identify them because even though there are a bunch of different scams, they all give off the same warning signs.
- Don’t click links in emails. A person should never click links in suspicious emails. If they need to visit a website, they should do so by manually entering the desired site into the search bar on their web browser.
- Too good to be true. It’s almost a cliché at this point, but when things seem too good to be true, it is often because they are. If an email is promising unimaginable wealth, then it is a scam.
- Don’t wire transfer money. Wired money can be traced or returned to the victim, which is why scammers love to use this method of money transfer.
- Don’t be rushed. Scammers love to create a sense of urgency or a need to rush. This causes people not to think things through and end up making bad decisions, which is good for a scammer and bad for the victim.
- Don’t give out personal info. A person should never give out personal information unless they are 100% certain of who they are giving it to.
- Don’t be urged into secrecy. Some scams don’t want their victims to communicate with others about the scam, because doing so will lessen the chances of the scam succeeding.
- Check sender email address. If the email address is gibberish, or from an email that is similar, but not the same, as an official company email, then it is a scam.
No One Wants To Get Conned
No one ever wants to get scammed out of their hard earned money. They especially don’t want to ever have to admit that they might have been tricked. After all, getting conned is not fun. In order to avoid this, a person needs to stay vigilant. Luckily, the signs of a scam are often pretty obvious and easy to detect, provided a person knows what to look for. The tips above can help push a person in the right direction.
If a person wasn’t planning on going anywhere this summer, and yet receives an email for the confirmation of tickets for a flight being purchased, it is probably a scam. If the person wants to be sure that they have nothing to worry about, go to the supposed company’s official website and contact customer support from there. Do not click any links in the email.
What are some of the goofiest scams people have tried to pull on you?
Share them in the comments below, along with the signs that proved to you it was a scam. Sharing this information could help others avoid the scam in the future.