E-Card Scams: Why Dads, Moms, And Grads Need to Beware of The Singing Penguins

During internet surfing, a message may pop up claiming someone sent you an e-card. You may think clicking on the e-card will lead to a cute poem, a singing cat, a virtual flower vase, or anything that’ll make you smile. Beware: you might be on the edge of falling for a popular type of fraud known as the e-card scam. Rather than being delightful, the surprise e-card can cost you money.

 

Many cyber-criminals use e-cards to scam people and steal their identities. They tailor the scams around holidays, seasons, and special events because victims are likelier to fall for the tricks when they look forward to celebrating with their loved ones.

 

Dads, moms, grads, and anyone else marking special occasions must fight the urge to impulse-click on all e-card pop-ups that make it to the email inbox. Whenever you’re sent a link on social media or via text or email claiming it’s an e-card from Hallmark, you’ll be asked to click on the link to open it.

 

You might click to find there are no dancing cats, balloons, or singing penguins. Instead, a scammer sent the link to install malware on your device. Once they’re successful, they can harm in a variety of ways. Here are the top ones experts at FraudTrac want you to know about.

#1- Identity Theft

When spyware, a type of malware, is installed on a device, it may gather personal information like your full name, bank logins, Social Security Number, and other data from keystrokes, websites you visit, or messages you send. Cybercriminals use personal information to steal your identity to apply for credit card accounts or open new bank accounts under the victim’s name.

#2- Scamming Your Friends

Scammers accessing the login credentials may hijack your email and send scam emails to your contacts. The emails may include links that install malware on their devices or might hit them for money.

blocked pop-up ads on a laptop

#3- Annoying Pop-Up Ads

The malware subjects victims to pop-up ads that try to convince them to buy bogus products. Check for malware if you’ve been waking up to unwarranted notifications at 3 AM or messages filled with hawking diet pills and other shady wares.

Knowing the signs of e-card scams is a smart way to keep up with the recommended security protocols. If someone tries to scam you, it’ll be smart not to click on the e-card message without verifying first.

Claims about secret admirers or someone you may know sending you e-cards are almost always red flags that you shouldn’t overlook. Always check you send the card and ask your co-workers, friends, and family to tell you when they send one.

Now that you know what to do if an e-card shows up on your computer, tablet, or phone, don’t forget to warn other people by filing a scam report online through FraudTrac.

As a trusted online scam tracker website, we encourage people to report online fraud and file scam reports to help others be alert. You can report malicious activities, such as consumer fraud, pension scams, credit card fraud, and other types of fraud and cyber scams, by connecting with us.

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