Phishing is a hacking technique that may appear on a high-traffic site or in an email from a well-known service in which a hacker provides a spoofed link with malicious software. Combined with social engineering, it's become one of the more commonly used and prolific cyber-attack vectors.
The email or website may look real, but is, in fact fake, and any personal or credit card details you enter will be recorded and used against you.
Buying anything on the internet is not without risk, but if you follow a few simple guidelines, you can easily avoid the most common scams. Here are a few things to be aware of:
- Think before you click: It's very easy to make a link look real. Instead, use your browser bookmark or type in the address yourself.
- Verify the website's security: Before submitting any details, make sure that the site's URL begins with https and look for a closed lock icon 🔒 in the address bar.
- Be suspicious: If a person or service you're familiar with suddenly behaves differently than expected, you can always contact them in another media and confirm that they did this.
- Account managers and brokers: Pretending to keep your interests at heart, these so-called account managers, investment bankers, or brokers will obtain your details and, after a while, abuse their access to your personal info. Make sure you've done thorough research before letting someone manage your crypto assets for you.
- Airbnb: If someone is asking you to pay an Airbnb rent or deposit in crypto, you're being scammed. Airbnb does not support crypto payments.
- Amazon: If you're trying to cancel your Amazon Prime or get a refund, know that Amazon will never ask for your card details over the phone, and also does not support crypto payments.
- Reputation: A scam merchant will likely have a long list of angry victims calling them out. It only takes a couple of minutes to search for a name or company and see what others are writing about it.
- Spelling errors: Scams come and go fast, and often don't have the time (or capacity) to build a polished product. If a website is full of grammatical errors and inconsistencies, it's cause for suspicion.
In some cases, customers are misled to believe they are talking to the phone support of (for example) Coinmama.
Know that Coinmama does not provide phone support. Click here for more information on how to contact us. To find out about more common scams, click here.
Click one of the tabs below for a quick summary on a few of the many different types of scams:
- Your computer is not hacked! No legit company will ever call to tell you that your computer has been compromised.
- Be cautious about giving out your personal details: Real support representatives may ask for a single personal detail to confirm your identity, but will rarely ask for more.
- Look out for a high sense of urgency: In hopes of getting your payment before you have a chance to think it through, scammers will often be in a hurry 🔥. Take whatever time you need to understand exactly what they want and why.