Investment scams are on the rise, and cybercriminals are evolving the ways in which they exploit innocent people out of their hard-earned money. With the cost of living rising, those people with financial planning in uncertain times are looking for more ways to make their money work for them, and unfortunately it puts them at risk of being scammed and tricked into fake money-investing schemes fabricated by scammers.
Recent figures reveal that victims have lost over £63 Million to investment fraud scams on social media alone. These figures continue to rise as the scammers create new and evolve ways to lure victims into their money exploiting schemes everyday.
The strategies may seem innocent at first glance, but if people are not warned soon enough about the new upcoming scams, they may fall victim to the discrete tactics of cyber scammers.
Evolving Pension Scams
Pension scams targeting the most vulnerable of communities are not necessarily new, but they are evolving with the increase of protection and data against them, giving scammers more of a reason to work harder to take the money. Like a lot of investment scams they promise high reward and low risk often into overseas investments, for example hotel developments, forestry and even storage units.
Scammers might even gather personal information to confirm the interests of the individual to win them over. For example with the surge of sustainable energy, older generations are keen to do their part and investment into renewable energy and fake solar investments may sound appealing.
What is not appealing however is when scammers convince the victim to transfer all their savings over to them in an ‘easy and rewarding’ transaction, when the real repercussion of it is millions lost every year.
Tik Tok Scams
With the massive popularity social media platform Tik Tok has gained since lockdown, it is no surprise that cyber scammers have taken the opportunity to exploit users in new ways on the platform.
Scammers have opted for identity theft impersonating famous Tik Tokers, and even tik tokers with a smaller following, practically anyone who they think are convincing enough to get people into cryptocurrency scams particularly.
They post regular content at first gaining as many followers as possible, before posting an advertising fraud crypto investments that may be convincing enough to an uneducated user. The business they affiliate with will pose as a regulated broker, and then users come to find out they are not in any way regulated once they take their money and disappear. Keep an eye out for these accounts and report them as soon as you see any activity such as this.
The basic premise for this scamming tactic is to feed its victims promises of riches and fortune after building up trust and a close relationship through an alias account.
These scammers target people on all social platforms to pose as a wealthy successful individual who can help the victims with their investments. Their tactics may seem friendly and charismatic at first, but once they know they have your trust that is where they take advantage of the victims whilst they have them. They even go as far as to target wealthy singletons on dating apps and form a fake relationship with them.
Have you ever watched The Tinder Swindler? If you haven’t, you should give it a watch as it pretty much reflects real-life examples of just how sneaky these seemingly ‘helpful’ scammers can be. They can really be anyone hiding in plain sight, so stay vigilant when people are offering you a lucrative investment as if it seems too good to be true, it usually is!