TIPS & TRAPS
How to avoid becoming a victim of the most common types of fraud.
GOOGLE IS YOUR FRIEND
Google Maps will help determine whether an address is real or just an empty lot. The information might not always be 100% perfect, but at least a review of a person’s provided information can assist in your review of whether or not the transaction may be suspect and require further investigation.
PROTECT YOUR PERSONAL INFORMATION
- Do not share your personal, banking or credit card information with people you don't know or trust, and never give them access to your computer.
- Check your bank and credit card statements every month for suspicious activity.
- Before you throw out personal documents, destroy them first by either shredding or ripping them up.
- Beware of entering competitions online where you must provide personal information.
- Activate privacy settings on social media sites and be careful what you post online, as information can be easily stored and archived, even if you delete it.
- Never share your PIN codes used for banking or your devices.
If it seems too good to be true, then it probably is
Ask questions of the caller:
- What is your name and what company do you represent?
- Who owns your company?
- What is your address?
If they avoid answering these questions, the deal they are offering you is probably a scam. Hang up the phone, delete and block the email or messages through social media, and stop dealing with the person.
- Are they pressuring me to take up this offer?
- Does it seem too good to be true?
- Are they asking for money or anything unusual?
- Have I done my own research?
SECURE YOUR COMPUTER AND MOBILE DEVICE
- Make sure you have good security software (anti-virus, anti-spyware and a firewall) and keep it up to date.
- Turn on automatic updates for the operating system (e.g. Windows) and update all other applications and software programs when updates are available through their official websites.
- Make sure your wireless network is encrypted. If you're not sure how to do this, seek advice from your internet provider.
- Turn off your computer or disconnect it from the internet when you're not using it.
- Scan devices such as USBs or external hard drives for viruses, before opening them.
- Delete and do not open any unsolicited or suspicious emails you receive. If you've already opened them, don't click on any links or open any attachments in these emails.
- Do not accept messages or friend requests from people you don't know.
- Be wary of clicking on advertisements about banking, finances or investments in your social feed.
- If you use public computers (e.g. in libraries), never save your passwords to them.
- Avoid using wi-fi to log into your bank accounts.
- Be cautious of installing third party applications onto your phone - they can be used by scammers to steal account details.
Phishing is the fraudulent attempt to obtain sensitive information such as usernames, passwords and credit card details by disguising oneself as a trustworthy entity in an electronic communication.
What is Vishing?
Vishing is the telephone equivalent of phishing. It is described as the act of using the telephone in an attempt to scam the user into surrendering private information that will be used for identity theft.
SMiShing is a security attack in which the user is tricked into downloading a Trojan horse, virus or other malware onto his cellular phone or other mobile device. SMiShing is short for "SMS phishing."
Pharming is a scamming practice in which malicious code is installed on a personal computer or server, misdirecting users to fraudulent Web sites without their knowledge or consent. Pharming has been called "phishing without a lure."
A Ponzi scheme is a fraudulent investing scam promising high rates of return with little risk to investors. The Ponzi scheme generates returns for early investors by acquiring new investors. This is similar to a pyramid scheme in that both are based on using new investors' funds to pay the earlier backers.
It is the wrongful or criminal deception intended to result in financial or personal gain.
White Collar Crime
White-collar crime refers to financially motivated, nonviolent crime committed by businesses and government professionals. It was first defined by the sociologist Edwin Sutherland in 1939 as "a crime committed by a person of respectability and high social status in the course of their occupation".
The Fraud triangle is a framework designed to explain the reasoning behind a worker's decision to commit workplace fraud. The three stages, categorised by the effect on the individual, can be summarised as pressure, opportunity and rationalisation.
Banking fraud occurs when someone attempts to take funds or other assets from a financial institution or from customers of that institution by posing as a bank official.
Credit Card Dump
A credit card dump is stolen electronic copy of that information. Criminals use the credit card dump to create clones of your credit card and use them to make unauthorized credit card transactions. Or, they may sell copies of this information on the internet to other criminals seeking to make fraudulent charges.
- Never give your personal health information, like your medical history or specific treatments you’ve received, to anyone who asks you for it.
- Protect your medical scheme card like a credit card, but never perceive it to be a credit card which can be used on non-healthcare expenditure.
- Ask questions if any information received from a healthcare provider is unclear.
- Health care fraud schemes come in all forms—fraudulent billings, medically unnecessary services or prescriptions, kickbacks, duplicate claims, etc.
- Fraudsters and syndicates target medical schemes as well as medical scheme members and beneficiaries. They are usually very familiar with the different benefit structures and scheme rules.
- Fraud, waste and abuse is committed by healthcare providers, owners of medical facilities and laboratories, suppliers of medical equipment, organized crime groups, corporations, and very often by medical scheme members and their beneficiaries.
- Healthcare fraud cases sometimes cross over into other investigative areas, like organised crime, gangs, and cyber crime, where criminals are beginning to use the proceeds from healthcare fraud to fund other illegal and sinister operations.
- Review your claims from healthcare providers and also your claims advice from your medical scheme after receiving healthcare services and ensure the treatment or consultation dates and services claimed for are correct.
- Use a calendar to record all of your doctor's appointments and what tests or X-rays you get. Then check your medical scheme statements carefully to make sure you got each service listed and that all the details are correct. If you spend time in a hospital, make sure the admission date, discharge date, and diagnosis on your account are correct.
- Always check your pills before you leave the pharmacy to be sure you got the correct medication, including whether it's a brand or generic and the full amount. If there are discrepancies, report the problem to the pharmacist.
- Ask questions. You have a right to know everything about your medical care including the costs billed to your medical scheme.
- Educate yourself about your medical scheme benefits and rules. Know your rights and know what a healthcare provider can and can't bill to your medical scheme.
- Be wary of healthcare providers who tell you that the item or service isn't usually covered, but they "know how to bill your medical scheme" so the medical scheme will pay.
- Don't contact your doctor to request a service that you don't need.
- Don't let anyone persuade you to see a doctor for care or services you don't need.
- Don't accept medical supplies from a door-to-door salesman. If someone comes to your door claiming to be from your medical scheme, remember that medical schemes don't send representatives to your home to sell products or services.
- Don't be influenced by certain media advertising about your health. Many television and radio ads don't have your best interest at heart.
- Don't give your medical scheme membership card, membership number or your Identity number to anyone except your doctor for the purpose only for which it was intended.
- Healthcare providers who offer free services or waive a co-payment may not be a bargain. They may charge your medical scheme more for other services to make up the difference, or add services you didn’t receive.
- Recognise it, report it, stop it. When you are aware of unethical or fraudulent behaviour, report it to your medical scheme without delay.
Most common frauds in retail:
- Employee Fraud
- Refund Fraud
- Discount Abuse
- Sweethearting (false price adjustments)
- Vendor Theft
- Cash Register Tampering
- Wardrobing (returning after use or “renting”)
Avoiding and Preventing:
- Upgrade Your Point of Sale System
- Implement Eligibility Verification
- Streamline Policies and Procedures
How to Document and Report a Collision
As soon as it is safe to do so, take photographs of the scene of the collision and make notes about:
- The date, time and location of the collision;
- The position of the vehicles involved in the collision relative to each other and relative to the traffic controls (e.g., stop lights, stop signs, etc.);
- The years, makes, models, colours and licence plate numbers of all vehicles involved;
- The names, licence numbers, addresses and phone numbers of all drivers;
- The insurance company names and insurance policy numbers for all vehicles;
- Specific damages to all vehicles;
- The number of passengers in the other vehicle(s);
- Contact information, descriptions and licence plate numbers (where applicable) for all witnesses and passengers;
- Whether occupants from other vehicles suddenly act injured when the police or other emergency response staff arrive;
- If police attend the scene – record the officer's name and obtain a copy of the collision report if one is made, even if the damage is minor;
If you self-report a collision, include as much information – such as comments on any photos taken – as possible. Notify your insurance representative as soon as possible with all available information. If you witness a collision, get involved by watching for the warning signs of a scam and assist victims with collecting details.
5 TIPS FOR AVOIDING FRAUD AFTER A COLLISION
- Contact your insurance company if a stranger tries to steer you to an unknown body shop, doctor, chiropractor or legal representative.
- See only medical and legal professionals you know and trust, or those who are recommended by people you trust.
- Contact medical and legal licensing regulators in your province to ensure that your service provider is licensed and that no complaints have been lodged against that provider.
- Know what your medical benefits are, i.e., what is covered and what is not.
- Keep detailed records of your medical appointments including dates, locations, names of people who provided treatments, diagnoses and services, as well as records of the medicine, supplies or equipment provided.
- Be involved in your claim. Compare your records against the statements you receive from your insurance company to make sure the bills are accurate and that they don't include goods or services you didn't receive.
- Never sign any blank insurance claim forms.
- Know what your full and final settlement includes.
Telecommunications fraud is the use of telecoms products or services for fraudulent purposes, resulting in losses and revenue leakage for operators. While both fixed line and mobile operators are targeted, there exist various categories of fraud focussing specifically on mobile users and / or operators.
- Always use a password to access your phone and do not share that password with anyone.
- Be sure to use a pin number for SIM card access.
- Have you put measures in place to monitor unusually high spending on your personal device or on the company issued phones of your staff?