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Protect Yourself from Social Media Scams

August 29, 2023

Woman looking at phone while sitting on a couch

In today’s interconnected world, social media has become a powerful tool for staying connected, but it’s also a hotspot for scams that can leave you vulnerable and financially compromised. Two prevalent scams that have emerged recently are the loan/grant scam and the artist/muse scam.

Loan/Grant Scam: Don’t fall for false promises
You might come across posts on platforms like Instagram offering quick grants or loans with no repayment required. Scammers often ask for your digital banking credentials and promise easy money in exchange for interest payments via cash apps. They may also ask you to deposit a fake check and send back a portion of the money. Always double-check suspicious deposits with your financial institution.

Artist/Muse Scam: Be cautious of unrealistic offers
This scam preys on creative individuals seeking opportunities online by asking you to be their muse for an upcoming project. Scammers might ask you to buy supplies for them, claiming reimbursement via check. Always be skeptical if you’re asked to front money for a promise of future compensation.

Be on the alert for these red flags:

  • Unsolicited direct messages from strangers on social media.
  • Requests for your username and password. (Legitimate sources won’t ask for these.)
  • Receiving money or checks and then being asked to send money back.

Tips to stay safe:

  • Stay skeptical. If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.
  • Protect your information. Never share sensitive details like usernames, passwords, or banking info.
  • Verify sources. Research offers and individuals before engaging in financial transactions.
  • Double-check deposits. Verify with your bank before spending funds from a deposited check.
  • Use trusted platforms. Stick to reputable websites and apps for financial transactions.

Stay vigilant and protect your information. If you have questions or think you may have been a victim of fraud, please report it to RCU’s Fraud Department at 1 (800) 479-7928 or contact us online.