Scammers - trying to steal your identity
We’re talking spoof and phishing here, and everything else about people trying to get access to your details and accounts online.
What do you mean by ‘phishing’?
It’s when scammers try to trick you into giving them your personal info (the kind you shouldn’t share with anyone). Like account passwords and bank details. They usually do this by sending you emails, website links or texts on your phone, pretending to be a real company, like Gumtree for example.
So how can I protect myself?
The top tip here is, always go to a website directly by using your browser instead of following a link, and if you’re in doubt don’t do anything and contact the company or bank instead.
Let’s look at how they do it. We’ll use Gumtree as an example
What they do here is, to try and get you to log into a website that looks like Gumtree. The email will look like it’s from us, and it’ll have a link to a website that looks like ours. Once you log into this website, they’ll take your login details.
Always look out for these signs:
- Just because it’s from firstname.lastname@example.org doesn't mean it really is. This is easy to fake!
- You need to log in or make a payment quickly before your ad is deleted or account is closed. We would never do this!
- Asking for private info. We would never contact you to ask for your credit card details, account name or password to ‘confirm’ or ‘verify’ your status.
- A URL link to a fake website that looks like the Gumtree site. Our real Gumtree pages will always be on www.gumtree.com or my.gumtree.com.
- A website that is blocked by your web browser or anti-virus. Fake websites can contain malware that allow scammers to take control of your computer or take all of your info. Protect yourself with the latest version of your web browser and use an anti-virus program.
Top tip: Never let your email address be seen on any website.
We never send any SMS messages asking you for your password, billing address or bank details. If you get one, it’s not us!
Sometimes scammers reply to ads by SMS message, pretending to be buyers. These SMS messages ask you to click on funny-looking URL links. Or reply to a new or different email address instead of click on a link.
The scammer would ask you to log into your account from a link that looks like Gumtree's (but is not), or ask you to make a payment for a feature over the phone.
Remembers, we would never call you to do this or ask for your account password, billing address or bank details.
If you get one of these calls, just hang up!
Fake sites are designed to trick you into typing in your details (like bank details or login details), for the scammer to steal.
Only log into Gumtree when the URL address is https://my.gumtree.com/login, and there’s a little padlock in front of it in the address bar.
The fake website will look identical to the real one, so make sure to look at these small details.
I am being offered services from Gumtree. Is that real?
We don’t get involved in payments or item delivery between buyers and sellers. If someone tells you that they’re going to make a payment or deliver items through us, they’re not being honest with you. Even if they link you back to our website, we just don’t offer these kinds of services.
I’ve had this happen to me. What do I do now?
If you’ve gotten one of these emails or calls, let us know. Call us on 0208 605 3325 or talk to us on live chat.
If you’ve received a text message you think is suspicious, forward it to 7726 to report it to your network provider.
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