Distressed woman looking at documents with her head resting in her hand.

7 Ways to Avoid Scams

In honor of International Fraud Awareness Week, Military Saves shares seven tips from Military Consumer on how to avoid falling prey to scams. 

Crooks defraud millions of people every year. Their schemes often combine new technology with lies to get people to send money or give up personal information.

Tip #1

If someone calls asking for money or personal information, hang up. It’s easy to fake Caller ID, so don’t use it to decide whether a call is real.

Tip #2

Is it a recorded sales pitch? Robocalls like that are illegal. Hang up. Don’t press a number to speak to a person or be taken off the list. That could just lead to more calls.

Tip #3

Before you give up your money or personal information, stop and check it out. Type a company or product name into your favorite search engine with words like “review,” “complaint” or “scam.” Search for a phrase that describes your situation, like “IRS call.” Search for phone numbers to see if other people have reported them as scams.

Tip #4

Talk to someone you trust. Con artists want you to make decisions in a hurry, so slow down. Tell a friend – before you give up your money or personal information.

Tip #5

If you decide to pay someone, consider how you pay. Credit cards have fraud protection built in, but some payment methods don’t. Wiring money can be risky. It’s nearly impossible to get your money back. That’s also true for gift cards and reloadable cards. Once you share the number on the card, the money is gone. Remember that the government and honest companies won’t insist that you use these payment methods. 

Tip #6

Never deposit a check and wire money back. That’s a big sign of a scam. Banks have only a few days to make funds from deposited checks available. But it can take weeks to uncover a fake check. If the check you deposited turns out to be fake, you have to repay the bank the full amount.

Tip #7

Sign up for the FTC’s free scam alerts and get the latest tips and advice about scams. And report scams to the FTC to help stop scams from harming more people. 


Need some support to reach your savings goal? Take the Military Saves Pledge, and we’ll send you tips, information, and best practices to not only help you save toward your goal, but also protect that savings. 

TAKE THE PLEDGE


It's #FraudAwarenessWeek. Check out these 7 tips to avoid scams, courtesy of @MilConsumer >> http://bit.ly/2zYczGL 

Tweet this now

Tip of the Day

  • Written by Katie Bryan | November 29, 2013

    Transferring #money from #checking to #savings is the fastest way to #save $500 - $1,000 >> http://ow.ly/e7ClM

Saver Stories View all »

A Plan for Success

Written by Super User | April 26, 2012

I’m Staff Sergeant Robert Zuniga and I have been an active duty Air Force medic for eight years. I plan on staying in long enough so that I can retire at 20 years. I have always been interested in personal finance and would like to share how it IS possible for me and my stay-at-home wife and two kids to not only save and invest a ton of money but also have a lot of responsible fun as well on 'low' enlisted pay. You CAN do it too!

First off, we write down our goals and separate wants from needs.

Read more...

Money on the Side

Written by Super User | November 26, 2010

Camp Arifjan, Kuwait -- A colonel in the 1st Theater Sustainment Command has money on his mind.

Army Col. George Fields, the Chief of Intelligence, or G2, has been teaching a free "Managing Your Money" class here in his spare time. More than 400 students have attended his six week-long class to learn more about increasing their own finances.

"All I did was sit down and listen to a guy one day who showed me what he was doing" said the colonel as he explained how he became interested in what he calls, "becoming financially free."

Read more...

Regular Savings is the Key to Success

Written by Super User | November 26, 2010

My name is Chris Strong. I joined the Air Force on 25 March, 1985. On that day, my financial life changed forever. I was introduced to saving bonds in Basic Training. Savings bonds were the big thing back then just like the Thrift Savings Plan is today. A Colonel gave us a briefing. I cannot remember his name but I can remember the 100 savings bonds he had posted to a piece of card board. He gave us a speech on the importance of saving money and how it can change your life. He inspired me to save.

Read more...