Scams continue to be prevalent across the internet. The most common as we all see is the phishing scam when unsolicited email asks you to give private information like real name, date of birth, social security number, etc.

Despite awareness, sometimes people get caught off guard – usually because they get in a desperate situation. Right now many are unemployed or have the homes being foreclosed on. Of course this leads to scammers going after the remaining few dollars the now downtrodden possess.

These are the biggest consumer scams of 2009 – According to Consumer Reports.

Acai Supplements and Other "Free" Trial Offers – these often cost up to hundreds of dollars, month after month.

Stimulus/Government Grant Scams —Offers for worthless assistance and advice on how to get government grants swamped consumers emails.

Robocalls — Owning a cell phone or having a phone number on the do-not-call registry didn't halt harassing automated telemarketing calls in 2009. The prevalence of robocalls violating federal telemarketing laws prompted the FTC to increase restrictions on the practice.

Lottery/Sweepstakes Scam — Victims received letters in the mail pretending to be from Reader's Digest etc. Informing them that they'd won millions. Any time anyone asks you to pay anything to go further in a contest – it is a scam.

Job Hunter Scams — Scams targeting job hunters varied and included attempts to gain access to personal information such as a bank account or Social Security number – just a variant of the phising scam.

Google Work From Home Scam — Need I say more?

Mortgage Foreclosure Rescue/Debt Assistance —victims paid hundreds of dollars up front for assistance they desperately sought after but never received.

Mystery Shopping —A seemingly real-looking check supposed to cover the costs, but they are fakes, and victims were out hundreds, even thousands, of dollars.

Over-Payment Scams — Over-payment scams usually targeted small business owners, landlords, or individuals with rooms to rent, and sellers who placed classified ads on sites like Craigslist. Once again this is usually a variant of the phishing scam.

H1N1 Spam —Spam e-mail focusing on products designed to prevent the spread of the H1N1 virus were rampant in 2009.

For the whole story – go here.

If you want to investigate the email that these scams are sent from, you can try using email tracer. I have used it with limited success. It is not totally the answer, as we all know we can open an email account anywhere with false information. You will be surprised at how public records can give information on an email address. But is ain't half bad!

I hope you can stay away from being scammed – and most of all…
Stay safe!

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