Scammers want your money. To get it, they'll try to scare you into divulging account information, trick you into opening a harmful attachment, or dupe you into sending personal information. They hope that you're gullible enough to fall victim to their deceptions.

  • Sells products at very low prices

  • Website address similar to real website

  • Company has no physical address or Tel #

  • Pop-up security warnings not from your security software

  • Free, but pay shipping, processing or handling

  • Receive check for more than expected, asked to send back remainder

  • Links or attachments relating to catastrophic events

  • Work at home programs

  • Click a link or your account will be de-activated

  • Buy with Western Union or Money-Gram payment

  • Seller outside your country

  • Represents themselves as foreign government officials

  • Requests social security number or drivers license number

  • Email addresses or phone numbers for companies different than usual

  • Charging upfront or monthly fees to be your drop-shipper

  • Place an order and ask you to "call and confirm your order"

Precautions You Should Take   TOP

  • Avoid selling to private individuals unless they have a good history of paying, since some may cheat you by claiming they never got product.

  • Never buy a product simply by Googling the name of the product and then clicking on the lowest price.

  • Email attachments, from people you don't know, are common carriers of malware, spyware, or viruses.

  • "Your computer is infected! Get help now!" DO NOT click on this. It is either a sales pitch or a way to get into your computer. Immediately reboot your computer and run your own virus software.

  • If the company web site has a approval seals on their front page indicating they are hacker safe, credit-card safe registered, verified etc, they may be over-compensating for something that wrong.

  • Some stores may take your order, tell you the product is in stock when it's not. Get their carrier shipping number  i.e. UPS number to make sure they have really shipped it.

  • Manufacturers do not have vendors selling their real high demand items at very low price.

  • Providing personal information such as credit card or banking details to a "look-a-like" website

  • Unsolicited email, i.e. you've won a major prize in an international lottery.

  • Facebook friends can easily be tricked into sending money in response to believable pleas for help that was supposed to came from you.

  • Responding to special investment offers

  • Fake blogs/ads/products/work-at-home jobs, are all over the Internet

  • Ads and pop-ups promise a free trial of some sort of and then ask you to pay for shipping and handling fees.

  • Discounts for an On-Line purchase, Telemarketing or Direct Mail for "Free Trial" or a small bonus check. You may miss the fine print that signs you up for a monthly fee for some item.

  • If an email address has just crazy letters or is very long with items you don't recognize-DON'T OPEN IT!


Verify Sites   TOP


  • Determine quality of a purchase: Consumer Reports, CNET Reviews, Amazon reviews, Buzzillions reviews gives you the pros and cons of a product and some will tell you about outright scams.

  • To find legit stores use www.resellerratings.com . They are a good review site for online stores

  • WHOIS information can tell you when a domain was registered. You can easily get WHOIS information for most domains from a site like www.domaintools.com  .

Can't Be True And Is Probably a Scam   TOP


  • Name brand electronics prices are controlled by industry manufacturers. There just aren't any "dirt cheap" prices to be had on new, name brand electronics.

  • An overseas/out-of-state/out-of-city buyer offers to purchase your car or other expensive bulky item.

  • Cashier's checks are NOT the same as cash. However, counterfeit ones can look very authentic.

  • Ignore e-mails containing a subpoena for jury duty in federal court.

  • Never pay an advanced fee to obtain a loans or credit card.

Gotchas Are Usually Scams   TOP


  • Try to convince you to send money to someone by money wiring, escrow, or Internet payment service.

  • Bank checks for more than the amount agreed upon and send back difference

  • Never "update your account" via a link provided in a message

  • Online newsletters "tout" or recommend a stocks

  • "Pump and dump" schemes boost the price of a stock with false or misleading statements and then sell their holdings.

  • Requests from IRS, FBI or other Federal agents (they don't send emails). 

  • Work from home are generally poor bets

  • You're a winner of a free desirable product

  • Auction fraud includes misleading product descriptions, or simply not receiving anything after paying the winning bid.

  • Second chance auction, where the loser of an auction is given the opportunity to buy the item at a reduced price

  • Disaster Relief send out emails with a link to a fake donation website.


NOTICE: We provide this Encyclopedia as a public service. Unfortunately we do not have the manpower to answer all of your emails or questions on specific topics. We, therefore, do not post our telephone number or address as all our communications are through email.

copyright   2011 - www.stopthescam.org 

Privacy Policy

Legal Statement