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Internet Fraud, Essay Example

Pages: 1

Words: 366

Essay

According to the United States Department of Justice, Internet fraud is a form of mass-marketing fraud which is a scheme that uses mass-communication devices, such as the Internet, to fraudulently solicit to prospective victims with the intent of conducting fraudulent transactions against the victims (Mass-Marketing Fraud, n.d.).

Data from the Internet Crime Complaint Center (Mass-Marketing Fraud, n.d.) reveals that the most common fraud schemes are 1) advance-fee fraud schemes, 2) bank account or credit card schemes, 3) business/investment/work-at-home opportunities schemes, 4) auction and retail schemes, and 5) lottery/prize/sweepstakes schemes.

Advance-fee fraud requires victims to pay fees in advance of receiving some fictitious benefit such as a million-dollar prize. Bank account or credit card fraud involves tricking victims into giving out their credit card or bank account information which is then used to gain access to victims’ money or to steal their identities. Business, investment or work-at-home opportunity fraud works by promising victims a large return on money they have given to these schemes or fees paid for opportunities that do not exist. Auction and retail fraud involves high-value items being offered to victims via an auction or retail site but are never sent to the victims in exchange for the money they have sent for the items. Lottery/prize/sweepstakes fraud usually operate from out of the U.S. and fraudulently notify victims of large money winnings, but in order to receive the money they must pay substantial fees or fake taxes.

To prevent becoming victims of Internet fraud, consumers should educate themselves about it. It is also a good idea to never respond to any type of Internet solicitation or announcement that is unfamiliar or looks suspicious in any way. Internet fraud prevention tips offered on the FBI’s website warns about being cautious when dealing with transactions from people outside of the United States (Common Fraud Schemes, n.d.). The bottom line, however, is no one can fraud anyone without their participation, so it is best to err on the side of caution, especially in this rapidly growing age of technology.

References

Common Fraud Schemes. Internet Fraud. The Federal Bureau of Investation website. Retrieved from http://www.fbi.gov/scams-safety/fraud/internet_fraud

Mass-Marketing Fraud. What Are The Major Types of Mass-Marketing Fraud? The United States Department of Justice website. Retrieved from http://www.justice.gov/criminal/fraud/internet/

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