ACCC explains different types of fraud consumers need to look out for.
Boston, MA – November 26, 2018
Fraud can come in many forms, and now, with the increase in online shopping and email spam, consumers are more susceptible than ever. It is vital for consumers to be aware of the different types of fraud they may encounter so that they can protect their identity and finances. National nonprofit American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) explains different types of fraud consumers need to look out for.
“It is imperative that consumers are aware of the different tactics fraudsters might use to steal their identity or empty their finances,” said Steve Trumble, President, and CEO of American Consumer Credit Counseling. “Prevention is key. Use difficult passwords and pins, change them frequently, shred unwanted documents that contain personal information, and check your credit card and bank statements for unusual activity.”
According to a study by SecurityIntelligence, fraudulent conduct dropped six percent but identity theft is up one percent, totaling 174,523 cases reported in 2017. Cifas National Fraud Database states that identity theft has increased 125 percent in the last decade and 84 percent of these identity frauds are occurring through online channels.
ACCC explains different types of fraud.
- Identity Theft – Identify theft occurs when a fraudster steals a consumer’s personal information and uses it without their permission, usually for financial gain. Identity theft negatively affects a consumer’s credit and finances, and more often than not, consumers don’t even know they are at risk.
- Telemarketing Fraud – This type of scam happens over the phone and is usually disguised as a charity or business asking to act now and send money. Real telemarketers are not allowed to ask for a fee upfront, so if a consumer is asked for payment information, it is most likely a scam.
- Ponzi Schemes – Ponzi schemes promise consumers investments in a nonexistent enterprise with high returns and little to no risk. The schemer will use a portion of the consumer’s money to pay other investors while pocketing the rest.
- Health Care and Health Insurance Fraud – There are a variety of different forms of health care and health insurance fraud. In some cases, insurers are billed for services that never happened, patients receive bills for medical equipment that was never received or ordered by their physician, or fake tests are offered that aren’t needed and billed to the insurance company.
- Email Phishing – Email phishing occurs when a fraudster sends an email to a consumer with a malicious link. If clicked, malware will be installed and can reveal sensitive information such as usernames, passwords, credit card details, or social security numbers. This can then lead to identity theft, unauthorized purchases, or the draining of funds.
ACCC is a 501(c)3 organization that provides free credit counseling, bankruptcy counseling, and housing counseling to consumers nationwide in need of financial literacy education and money management. For more information, contact ACCC:
- For credit counseling, and student loan counseling call 800-769-3571
- For bankruptcy counseling, call 866-826-6924
- For housing counseling, call 866-826-7180
- Or visit us online at ConsumerCredit.com
About American Consumer Credit Counseling
American Consumer Credit Counseling (ACCC) is a nonprofit credit counseling 501(c)(3) organization dedicated to empowering consumers to achieve financial management through credit counseling, debt management, bankruptcy counseling, housing counseling, student loan counseling and financial education concerning debt solutions. To help consumers reach their goal of debt relief, ACCC provides a range of free consumer personal finance resources on a variety of topics including budgeting, credit and debt management, student loan assistance, youth and money, homeownership, identity theft, senior living, and retirement. Consumers can use ACCC’s worksheets, videos, calculators, and blog articles to make the best possible decisions regarding their financial future. ACCC holds an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau and is a member of the National Foundation for Credit Counseling® (NFCC®). For more information or to access free financial education resources, log on to ConsumerCredit.com or visit https://www.consumercredit.com/debt-resources-tools/