When you go online today, you must be constantly vigilant about online scams. As scammers get smarter, it is getting easier and easier to fall victim to an online scam that steals your sensitive personal information. While many people assume that older generations are more likely to succumb to online scams, new research suggests that younger people fall prey to online scams at a higher rate.
According to the latest fraud report from Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada, most young people have been affected by financial fraud, with 63% of participants between the ages of 18 and 34 reporting they were involved in a scam at least once in their life. Debit card scams, email phishing scams, and credit card fraud are some of the most common forms of fraud young people fall victim to, according to this report.
Why are younger generations more likely to fall victim to online fraud, despite their general capabilities with technology and internet usage? The answer lies in the capabilities of the scammers. Today, scammers have elevated their tactics beyond basic email phishing and have begun to devise complex schemes targeting those who do their banking over the internet or shop online frequently.
Younger people are also more likely to do things like bank online or make major purchases over the internet than older generations, providing more opportunities for online fraud to occur. The recent report from CPA Canada found that of those between the ages of 18 and 34, 35% have made a major purchase online, but only 18% of those 55 and over have done the same.
Although internet fraud is widespread, this does not mean that falling prey to online fraud is inevitable. Regardless of your age or comfort with technology, you can follow certain safety protocols to protect your information and interests online. For example, never share financial information on an unsecured website, keep your credit and debit card numbers private, and learn your rights if you ever become a victim of fraud.