Red Flags

Experts say someone may be trying to con you if you:

  • ARE WARNED to keep the transaction a secret.
  • MUST DECIDE in a hurry. Scam artists know the less time you have, the less likely you will be able to research them.
  • MUST PAY in advance to get loans or credit cards (it is illegal to charge advance fees)
  • MUST PAY in advance to get a prize or sweepstakes (companies can't charge up front for winnings).
  • ARE ASKED to reveal bank account or Social Security numbers.
  • ARE ASKED to pay with cash or by money order.
  • ARE CONTACTED through an unsolicited fax or e-mail.
  • ARE "GUARANTEED" high returns that are "no risk".
  • ARE ASKED to invest in ventures that are involved in delayed delivery contracts, federal oil and gas lease lotteries, federal broadcast license lotteries.
  • ARE ASKED to deposit a check from a foreign bank in your account and forward part of the money to the sender.