Scams on the Internet have evolved throughout the years. A decade ago, it was mainly spam and malware infections. Today, more sophisticated Web crimes have emerged.

Last year, a combination of social engineering and information theft were used by criminal syndicates to perform most of the 600 monthly online scam cases reported by victims in the USA. This has now grown by more than 30% during the first half of 2016.

Found below are the latest online scams of 2016. Arm yourself with updated knowledge about the newest scams on the Internet this year, so you can quickly spot and easily avoid them.

Top Scams on the Internet This Year

  1. Phishing Scams – These scams on the Internet are performed by criminal syndicates in an effort to steal private information and account credentials of unsuspecting users. These scammers use fake sites and spam messages to perpetrate this Internet scam and victimize users around the world.

Users, who fell for this online scam reported that they first received convincing messages. These were sent out via email, SMS and in private messaging boards of popular social networks like Facebook and Twitter. Some of these messages were even from their trusted contacts, who had their accounts hacked by the criminals.

The messages asked people to log into their online accounts and update their profile details. The messages contained links that took them to fake sites. These were exact clones of online banking sites, shopping networks and Web mail platforms.

After entering their credentials to log into their accounts, people were taken to a page with a form for updating their profile details. A few users reported that they were immediately taken to an error page.

Little did they know, their account credentials were already captured and sent out to the criminal syndicates that operate scams on the Internet.Having filled out the form, they unknowingly gave away more private details and personal information to these scammers.

Many victims reported unusual charges to their credit cards and online banking accounts a few days after they unknowingly gave away their credentials. Some criminals were reported to have used the personal details that were entered by unsuspecting victims to compile fake identity packages that they sold on the Deep Web, according to local authorities.

So, before clicking links, carefully check the URLs of the links that you receive via messages, especially from unknown sources. Keep in mind that these criminals use similar looking domains for their fake sites. By doing this, you can avoid such scams on the Internet.

  1. Boyfriend & Girlfriend Fraud – These scams on the Internet are performed by criminal syndicates in an effort to lure unsuspecting victims to unknowingly participate in their product fencing and money laundering operations. They pose as legitimate users of popular online dating platforms. They mainly target single and married middle-aged men and women in the USA, Canada, the UK, Australia, Asia, the Middle East and other countries in the EU.

Once they successfully engage unsuspecting users in private conversations on the online dating platforms, more intimate messaging is performed outside the dating sites and apps. This is how these scams on the Internet start to victimize unsuspecting users of popular dating sites and apps.

Single users are mostly asked to receive money and products on behalf of the criminals. These products are mostly purchased by the criminals using stolen credit cards.

On the other hand, the scammers threaten married users to expose their intimate messages to their spouses and children unless they pay a hefty fee. When victims pay these criminals, their financial information is used for other illegal activities of criminal syndicates.

A few users have reported that they were tricked into setting up a business and a merchant account Such merchant accounts are used by the criminal syndicates to charge stolen credit cards. The scammers convince the users to do this by tricking them into going into a business venture. Many users have ruined their credit scores because of this.

These are the most widespread scams on the Internet this year. Share this info with your friends and colleagues, so they can also protect themselves against such Web crimes.