I once got an amusing phishing scam email informing me that someone has been trying to access my account from a foreign IP address and that I need to verify my information with them. Here’s an excerpt:
“If you choose to ignore our request, you leave us no choise but to temporaly suspend your account.”
The email then went on to include a link where I can verify my information with them. Of course, if I clicked the link I would no doubt be taken to a web page where I could enter sensitive personal information to be sent to scammers halfway around the world.
I didn’t fall for this one. In fact, I’ve never fallen for any scam. That’s because I have a personal habit of never giving in to a stranger asking something of me.
When people come to my door offering a service or a product, the answer is always “NO.” If I want their service or product, I will find them.
When someone calls my phone offering a service or a product, the answer is still “NO.” If I want their service or product, I will call them.
When someone emails me about some important business and provides me with links or phone numbers for my convenience, I refuse those conveniences. I will type in the link address myself, thank you. Or I will look up the phone number myself.
The same holds true when I receive advertisements in the mail or see them at the store. I don’t need to be told when I need to buy something. When I do need to buy something, I don’t need to be told what to buy.
Say no to all unsolicited advertisements or asks.
When you need something, seek it out yourself. When someone offers you a product or service, get their information, but don’t give them anything. When the bank calls and asks for your personal information, hang up and call the bank yourself. When you receive an offer for lawn aeration in the mail, think about if you really need lawn aeration, and if you do, find a lawn aeration company yourself.
This is about taking control of yourself, and not letting other people control you. Advertisements and solicitations are a form of mind control, and scammers use the same techniques. Say no to all advertisements and solicitations from strangers, and you stop scammers in their tracks.