As the year rolls on and we enter April, it may be time to start making sure you have all your finances squared away.
Each year brings new challenges, and if you are not prepared for the future, you could end up being stuck in a situation that you did not anticipate or have to deal with financial pressure. Pranking people on April 1st might be a long-running tradition in many cultures, but the fact remains that while some jokes might result in a laugh, you have to look after yourself and the folks you care about.
Being an April fool means that you have been taken in by someone purporting to be what they are not or pretending that something else is going on compared to reality. Scammers would fit into this category.
In just one year, the number of mobile phone scams jumped astronomically from just 3.7% of all calls to close to 30% 2018. By the beginning of this year, it was projected that scams will be more than 44% of the total calls.
Other types of fraud are on the rise too, including Medicare-related scams. In fact, the SSA warned the public about sites that may be sneaky enough to use Medicare logos which makes them seem legitimate but only exist to charge people for Medicare and Social Security Administration services which they could get for free.
Make sure you know where your money is and that you have control over it. Being lackadaisical about it won’t help.
Keeping on top of your money and keeping tabs on your budget as well as any expenses or possible scams means you won’t be another statistic when it comes to being an April fool.
A FEW TOP SCAMS TO LOOK OUT FOR
You’re owed money by the Secretary of State!
The scam goes like this: You get an email from someone who says they are former Secretary of State Rex Tillerson. The email says you're owed $1.85 million, which is the result of an investigation by the FBI and the CIA. You will apparently receive a debit card with huge sums of money available on it but first, you have to send over personal info and some cash. Be aware this is a scam!
Vacation rentals that do not exist
There were over 2500 complaints about this scam to the Better Business Bureau in 2017. Fraudsters advertise a vacation rental, but all the photos have been stolen from other properties, and your rental space either doesn’t exist at all in the area you were looking or it is not owned or operated by the scammers. They get your credit card details and take a large deposit and then disappear leaving you with money spent and nothing to show for it as well as a ruined vacation.
Don’t be caught in 2019, and don’t be made into an April fool. Make yourself aware of the scams out there so you don’t find yourself in the weeds hacking away, trying desperately to get on track because someone took advantage of you.
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