Guide

How Fraudsters Are Using Modern Tech To Their Advantage

Fraudsters are continually evolving their techniques to exploit modern technology and defraud people. The proliferation of the internet and the widespread use of smartphones have connected people globally, providing fraudsters with a larger pool of potential victims. Here are some ways fraudsters use modern technology to their advantage and how you can protect yourself from falling victim to modern-day fraud.

Hacking QR Codes

While hacking QR codes directly is uncommon, fraudsters can exploit QR codes in various ways to deceive and defraud people. Specifically, fraudsters can create QR codes that, when scanned, lead to malicious websites or initiate the download of malware-infected apps onto the user’s device. These codes may be distributed through phishing emails, fake advertisements, or even physical stickers placed over legitimate QR codes. 

ExpressVPN’s blog piece explains how fraudsters are even targeting public places such as restaurants and cafes due to the easy access such networks provide. These days, it’s easier than ever for cybercriminals to set up a fake Wi-Fi hotspot with a public name to trick the general public. This scam affects many due to the undetectable nature of a QR code. 

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To mitigate the risks associated with QR code fraud, it’s important to take precautions. This can be done by double-checking the website or app related to the QR code to check its legitimacy and by keeping your devices up to date with security software. 

Source: Unsplash

Deepfakes

Furthermore, advanced video and audio manipulation techniques have enabled fraudsters to create convincing deepfake content. They can use this technology to impersonate individuals, spread false information, or trick people into believing they are interacting with someone they trust. 

One classic example of deepfake fraud can be traced back to 2019 when a CEO of a UK-based energy firm received a phone call that he believed was from his company’s parent organization’s CEO. City A.M. reported how the caller convincingly imitated the CEO and asked the victim to transfer a significant amount of money to a fake Hungarian supplier. Believing the call to be legitimate, the funds were successfully transferred into the fraudster’s account.

Being aware of deepfake fraudsters can be challenging since deepfake technology continues to advance. However, there are some measures you can take to enhance your awareness. These include:

  • Analyzing Context and Behavior: Does the content of the audio or video align with this person’s typical behavior, speech, patterns, or expressions? Look for inconsistencies in character. 
  • Stay Informed: Keep up with the latest developments in deepfake technology and the methods used by fraudsters to better understand potential risks.
  • Verify The Source: Always verify the source of the media content you encounter. Look for reputable accounts and cross-reference for accuracy. 

By staying informed and aware of the best practices associated with deepfake fraud, you can minimize your risk of becoming subject to such an attack. 

Cryptocurrency

And finally, fraudsters are using advancements in digital currencies to commit crypto fraud. The rise of cryptocurrencies in recent years has opened up new opportunities for fraudsters. Cybercriminals are scamming crypto-buyers by creating fake initial coin offerings (ICOs) or investment schemes, promising high returns but ultimately stealing investors’ funds. Investopedia has highlighted how you can remain diligent about such scams by noticing warning signs such as; private cryptocurrency key requests, promises of making lots of money, or invitations for ‘free’ money or crypto. 

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As the crypto ecosystem continues to evolve and gain momentum, so do opportunities for fraudsters to exploit this trade. By understanding the common ways fraudsters can steal your information, you can prevent crypto fraud from happening to you. 

Stay Vigilant Out There

Fraudsters are leveraging modern technology, such as crypto-scams, deepfakes, and QR codes, to perpetrate sophisticated scams and defraud unsuspecting individuals. To protect yourself from modern-day fraud, it’s crucial to familiarize yourself with the tell-tale signs of how fraudsters can use such technology to their advantage. By staying informed, you can prevent yourself from falling victim to modern-day fraud. 

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