Everyone mistypes from time to time, however, in some circumstances, making a small typographical error can lead to your becoming a scam victim and losing considerable money. Scam artists, the only criminals we refer to as artists, purchase domain names that are quite similar to legitimate websites with which you regularly do business, such as your bank and construct a website that looks just like the real website you intended to go to. They lure you into entering your user name and password which they then use to steal money from your bank account. For example, http://www.bankofamerica.om is a phony website that is not the website of Bank of America. You might wonder if the “c” was left of off “.com” why your browser would take you anywhere, but the “.om” is a domain used in the country of Oman. Beyond banks, if you go to any of these phony, spoofed websites, you also run the risk of downloading malware by clicking on links or legitimate appearing popups on the websites that you have trusted. Some larger companies have anticipated this problem and actually register commonly mistyped domain names, but whenever you make a typographical error in typing in a domain name, you run a serious risk of fraud.
If you are using the most recent versions of the browsers Internet Explorer, Firefox or Google Chrome to find a financial account, on the left of the address bar will appear a lock and the name of the actual company that registered the website you are on which is a good way to confirm that you are at the true website and not that of a scammer.
It is a good idea to always confirm the domain name of any website you go to in order to make sure that you have not mistyped the name to avoid further problems. In addition, as indicated above, you should also check on the address bar to see who is the registered owner of the website to avoid problems. You also should use dual factor authentication whenever possible as further protection. Finally, a variation of this scam about which you should be aware has occurred when scammers buy telephone numbers that are a digit off from the legitimate customer service number of banks and other companies so again you should always make sure that if you are calling a financial institution, credit card company or any company with which you do business that the number you are calling is accurate before providing any personal information.
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