Financial scams have become very common in Ghana and other parts of the world. It is fascinating how financial scams and other fraudulent activities have advanced over the years.
Crooks use clever schemes to extort money from people. Previously, they used old aged tricks in duping others however with the availability of sophisticated technology, the activities of financial scams have increased. People now combine both old aged tricks with sophisticated technological tricks in scamming others. It is also easy for scammers to get victims because most people nowadays prefer easy and quick means of making money. They are quick to fall victim to false investments that promise abnormal returns without risks. Financial scams come indifferent forms and the common ones to be wary of in Ghana include the following.
Mobile money fraud: Mobile money as a form of technology has been helpful to a lot of people. People are able to do financial transactions without having a bank account or going to the bank. Despite this convenience, incidents of mobile money fraud has questioned the safety of using mobile money for transactional purposes. There have been several incidents of mobile money frauds and in 2019, statistics by the Cybercrime Unit of the Ghana Police Service showed that there have been over 300reported cases of mobile money fraud. The Situation is becoming scary day by day. In Ghana, there are several ways scammers use in defrauding people via mobile money. They sometimes fraud customers or mobile money agents working for the various telecommunication networks. This mostly happens with Mobile Telecommunication Network(MTN) in Ghana. This is because they are the one of the largest network companies in Ghana. The tricks used by the scammers vary. On some occasions, an MTN customer is called by a fraudster claiming to be calling from the office of MTN. They tell the customer that he or she has won an amount of money for being a loyal customer. They then put the person on a long call demanding for the person’s personal details such as their pins that grants them access to their money. In the end, the fraudsters get to know the pin and other necessary details which enable them to withdraw the money of the customer without their permission. That trick became popular and people became aware.
As a result the fraudsters changed to different tricks including calling to lie that they have sent money mistakenly to a customer's account. When the customer attempts to check their balance to confirm, they track the person’s pin in the process which grants them access to the person's money. There have also been instances where people see messages randomly on their phones asking them to authorize withdrawals they did not initiate. These tricks by scammers have landed most victims into tears. Even though efforts have been made by the various Telecommunication Networks especially MTN to curb the situation. It is still persistent. Recently, MTN has introduced an ID card system where all customers are supposed to register their SIM cards with their own Identification cards and also use the cards in withdrawing money. This is also intended to reduce mobile money fraud.
Aside from mobile money scam, family emergency scams are also common in Ghana. With this type of financial scam, fraudsters call people most especially grandparents and parents telling them that their children or relatives have been involved in an accident and have been rushed to the hospital. The fraudster then asks the person to send an amount of money immediately needed to pay for the hospital bill before the child or relative can be attended to by doctors. Making it seem like an emergency situation, most people do not even take a minute to check whether or not it is true. They quickly send the money without much questions. After sending the money, they try reaching the person back and in most cases the phone of the fraudster is switched off right after they receive the money. Most people have also fallen victims to this kind of financial scam.
Online shopping scams are also very common lately. Due to growing technology, online business has become the order of the day. Most people offer various services online, especially buying and selling of goods. Almost everything that can be bought physically from shops can equally be ordered online so most people nowadays buy from online sellers at the comfort of their homes. Despite this, things have not always been bright on the side of online shopping. People have been scammed by online shops several times. There have been instances where people paid for goods and never received them. There have also been situations where people buy the goods and receive something totally different, in most cases of a lower quality compared to what was advertised. Many people have fallen victims to this type of financial scams as well. People have paid huge sums of money buying items from other places expecting those items to be shipped into Ghana for them but have not received or heard from the sellers of these items. This is therefore a form of financial scam to be weary of.
Begging scam is one of the tricks used by fraudsters in Ghana. This usually happens on social media and off social media. Fraudsters sometimes inbox people on the various social media platforms asking for help. They always give false stories such as being sick and not being able to afford medicine, starving for several days among other lies. Compassionate people fall for these lies and end up sending money to these fraudsters. The same thing happens off social media, some fraudsters approach people with falsely sad stories and end up extorting money from these people. Many people have fallen victims to this type of scam as well..
Aside from the above mentioned types, there are several other tricks of financial scam that fraudsters use. It is important for one to be very careful when dealing with people who ask for money or when buying items online. It is also important to buy from trusted sources and to also avoid strange callers that often ask for personal financial details.
By: Saeed Fridaus.
Content created and supplied by: DrayB (via Opera News )
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