Google has launched a new programme to identify scammers who are using the Covid-19 crisis, to defraud people via online transactions.
San Francisco: Google on Thursday launched a new programme called Scam Spotter to spot and stop scammers who are exploiting the Covid-19 pandemic with alarming speed, taking advantage of fear and uncertainty.
The programme simplifies expert advice with three rules when you receive a suspicious phone call or message to figure out if it’s a scam.
The three rules are: “Slow it down, spot check and stop! Don’t send.”
The company also unveiled a new website ScamSpotter.org.
According to the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), people reported $1.9 billion lost to scams in 2019.
Every minute, more than $3,600 disappeared from wallets and bank accounts in response to made-up stories of urgently overdue tax payments, bogus contest winnings, or a smooth-talking online suitor who suddenly needs some gift cards.
“A high-pressure phone call or exciting message can overcome many people’s judgment, especially if they are caught at a vulnerable moment,” said Google.
While people ages 25-40 are most likely to be scammed, research shows it’s seniors who stand to lose the most, with their median losses more than double the average.
“If we learn how to spot the bad actors, we can spend our time focusing on those moments that matter,” said the company.
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