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Nine alerts to know if you are in the crosshairs of cybercriminals

cyber criminals continue to refine their techniques in the current economic and business context, reaching a high degree of sophistication.

“They know that we are comfortable interacting in the digital environment and that we routinely provide personal and financial information to different organizations online. So they’ve spawned a whole host of tactics to get hold of that information, as well as our hard-earned money. This is where we all need to become a bit more adept at enjoying our digital experience.” comments Josep Albors, head of research and awareness at ESET Spain.

By learning the most common techniques used by cybercriminals, we can be safer online, protect our data, and keep our assets safe. In this sense, ESET has prepared a list with the nine signs that will give away if you are being a victim of a cyber-scam:

Unsolicited messages

Phishing emails and text messages (smishing) are the basis of much of the network fraud attacks. There is a almost unlimited variety of methodsbut phishing generally works through social engineering, a technique in which scammers trick victims into complying with their requests.

unexpected calls

Also know as voice phishing or vishing. There are many reports that warn that fraudulent calls are on the rise. Fraudsters often use this method as part of a multi-stage attack in which they trick victims into contacting a number through a fraudulent email, these hybrid campaigns already account for 26% of all vishing calls.

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Pressure to act quickly

This may be a sweepstakes that is about to end, or it may be a fake delivery notice that says the item will be returned to the sender unless a fee is paid. The idea is not leaving the user time to think and force you to open a malware attachment, click on a malicious link, or even convince you to provide your personal data.

there is something that does not fit

Although cybercriminals are striving to appear as convincing as possible and are becoming accustomed to using tools like ChatGPT to further their own ends, we often come across messages that don’t have good grammar or use generic greetings like “Dear Customer”. Most likely, if such a shipment reaches us, it is from a scammer.

Unexpected requests to download a new update

Software updates are important for a safe and optimized user experience, but you need to make sure that downloads come from the right source. Never install anything on your computer that is not properly verified or that does not appear in the download list of a legitimate portal.

A popup notification with a number to clean up malware

False alerts, especially those related to technical support, are a widespread form of fraud. In this case, it is common for pop-up windows to appear on the device’s screen encouraging them to visit a malicious website. The message may say that you have been compromised with malware and that you should contact technical support for help in fixing the problem. In effect, by doing so, they will transfer the request to a fraudulent call center.

Too good to be true

Scammers frequently try to take advantage of the desire of Internet users. It could be the sale of high-value products whose price has been reduced considerably, the possibility of winning juicy prizes for answering a survey or a supposed safe investment in cryptocurrencies. The bottom line is that if it seems too good to be true, it’s usually a scam.

Love doesn’t come after a few interactions

For most of those who haven’t found it yet, dating apps have become a usual tool in the search for love.

Be especially wary of scams that occur on these platforms, where scammers build relationships through fake profiles to quickly move the conversation to unmonitored channels like encrypted messaging apps.

Money in advance

Instant money transfer apps and tools like Bizum, Cash App, or Venmo have made paying friends and family even easier than paying with cash. This has also opened up a new channel for cybercrime, where scammers can pose as someone you know to ask you for an emergency loan or pretend they are a company asking you to pay a bill or purchase.

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