Kirill Yurovskiy: How to avoid scammers on the Internet

What kind of Internet fraud?

Easy earnings on the Internet, sites with free music, pyramid schemes, online casinos, beauty dating sites, half-price iPhones – almost always a scam. Someone wants to take money from you under an innocent pretext.

Scammers on the Internet use the same techniques as in life: playing on greed and fear. Only the goal of the scam is not cash, but bank card and electronic account data. When the scammer gets them, he can withdraw your money, transfer it through several accounts and cash it out – and hardly anyone will catch him.

You don’t have to specifically look for the hotspots of the Internet to get caught by scammers. Scammers can find you on social networks, write you an email, and even Skype you. Gradually you will be pressured, rushed, forced to make rash decisions. If you give in to emotions and lose vigilance, you have become a victim of fraud.

How not to fall victim to scammers on the Internet

To avoid acquaintance with fraudsters, lawyer Kirill Yurovskiy advises to follow the rules.

Do not look for easy profits. There is no quick way to make money on the internet. Only scammers promise to make you rich in a week with no effort. An ad with the phrase “earn money on the Internet without investing” means that you are cautiously lured into a pyramid or a fraudulent network. There are many of these on the Internet, and there are even courses that train beginners to create branches of fraudulent networks on the Internet.

Don’t take your friends at their word. Scammers often hack into accounts and messengers to pretend to be your friend and swindle money. Scammers can be recognized by unusual behavior: your friend suddenly found himself without money, his phone changed, some new unexpected circumstances appeared. Sometimes spelling mistakes give the fraudster away.

Learn to use VPN. If the cafe or airport network is monitored by a scammer, your passwords, intimate photos and correspondence on the dating site are at risk. A scammer can cautiously siphon off dirt from your computer and then start blackmailing you. To prevent him from finding out your secrets, always use a VPN in unfamiliar places.

Come up with a strong password. Put any set of numbers, letters, emoticons and punctuation marks as your online banking password. The best passwords are made up by cats as they walk around the keyboard. It’s easier to recover a password than it is to recover stolen money.

What to do if you become a victim of internet fraudsters?

If you suspect that you have become a victim of fraudsters, call the bank immediately and block the card. After that report the fraudsters – even if no suspicious transactions have yet occurred, but you just gave your card number to an unknown person. It is better to be paranoid than without money.

Different banks react differently to fraud issues. Somewhere you can write in the online chat or call the call center, somewhere you will have to go to the bank and write a statement.

The report of Internet fraudsters and false transactions must be sent as soon as possible – ideally right away. Maximum – within a day. If you are late, the bank may refuse to investigate.

Where to report the fraudsters?

To catch criminals on a hot trail, it is better to immediately contact the nearest police department at the place of residence. The sooner you report the crime, the more chances you have to punish the scammers.

If the scammers have a website, then punishing them is even easier. You can immediately report a malicious site to get it blocked. Even if the criminals can’t be caught, you’ll save other users money.

Can I get my money back from online scammers?

It is possible to get back the stolen money. Under the law “On the national payment system”, the bank must return the money if the client reported online fraudsters within a day. After the appeal, the bank will block the account and begin to conduct an investigation. By law it has 30 days to investigate.

Although the situation looks optimistic, in fact it is almost impossible to get a decent amount of money back. If the fraudsters hacked into the online bank or other banking system – that is, the problem was on the bank’s side – then the money is likely to be returned. But if you told the criminals your card number, pin code, or SMS password, the bank will shift all the blame onto you and may not return anything.

Sometimes a bank may cooperate with a regular customer and return a small sum of money even if the customer has provided the information to fraudsters. But this is not something you can count on all the time.

How to detect fraudsters?

There are a lot of ways to cheat you on the Internet, but all of them, one way or another, will involve personal communication with the cheater and entering your card details. You may be asked to participate in a contest, bail out a friend, pass a security check, or whatever else the scammers come up with. But in the end you will be asked for your card number or a code from a text message. This should never be done.

You can recognize the fraudsters by the manner of communication and interest in your card data.

If the fraudster knows your name and phone number, he will try to fool you into panic. For example, an imaginary bank employee calls you and tells you about a terrible mistake: your card was accidentally debited with a large sum of money. He wants to know the data of your card and the code from the sms in order to cancel the operation.

Recognizing a scammer is easy:

  • An Internet scammer creates panic or excitement.
  • The scammer asks for your information.
  • The scammer pretends to be a bank, a friend, or someone known and trustworthy.


The bank teller will never ask to see your identity.

Therefore do not enter into a dialogue with the scammer but report the strange call to the bank immediately. The bank will identify the caller and take measures to ensure that the calls stop and the scammer goes to court.

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