Many fraudsters and organized crime syndicates that previously victimized users in their senior years are now targeting a younger generation of users for their online scams in the USA, Canada, Australia and the UK this year. This was recently announced by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), ActionFraud (the UK’s national online crime reporting center), Competition Bureau of Canada and RSA FraudAction among other cyber security specialists and online privacy experts.

A lot of organized crime groups and solo fraudsters are trying to integrate more effective social manipulation tactics and schemes into their online scams. This is one of the main reasons behind their shift of focus to this younger generation of users, according to some cyber security analysts. That’s because younger users tend to spend more time in online social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter and others. This provides criminal enterprises with a large ready pool of potential victims.

To reduce your chances of falling for these online scams, you should first learn about the newest forms of cyber fraud today that are mainly targeted at younger users. This will allow you to quickly recognize potential scams and identify the most suitable ways for you to steer clear from these Web crimes. To help you out – Here are some of the most prevalent types of Internet fraud this year:

Common Types of Online Scams in 2017

  1. Ransomware & Tech Support Fraud – These online scams are targeted at both younger users and those in their senior years. That’s because a lot of younger users tend to heavily rely on their mobile devices and computers for their day-to-day activities, while many senior users aren’t usually familiar with technical stuff, thereby making them susceptible to technical Internet fraud.

These online scams involve two main components. These include a distribution system for malicious applications and a group of scammers posing as tech support agents of popular household tech brands like Microsoft, Apple, Google and Facebook among others.

This distribution system is usually a set of websites, online tools, popular applications and digital content like movies and songs that have been tampered and injected with malicious code. These are published and shared all over the Internet. Once a user installs or downloads these infected materials, a pop-up message box will display in the screens of their compromised devices each time they open their Web browsers. That’s the first phase of these online scams.

These pop-up messages are integrated with scare rhetoric and fake urgency claims. They are designed to force users into calling a phone number to request for tech support services from qualified agents of popular tech companies. What most of them don’t know is that these are scammers just posing as tech support specialists who are working directly for the authors of these malicious applications. This is the second phase of these online scams, and unsuspecting users are forced to pay a hefty sum of money in exchange for removing the malicious application in their devices.

  1. Online Dating Fraud – Another type of extortion scheme on the Web, these online scams are designed to trick users into engaging in intimate conversations with scammers who pose as legitimate users of popular dating sites and apps. These are targeted at both younger users and middle-aged married men and women.

Once unsuspecting users have been baited by these online scams, the authors of these fraudulent Internet dating schemes threaten to publish recordings and snapshots of their chat conversations all over the Internet. Some threaten to directly send these materials to their parents, lovers, other relatives, employer and friends. Of course, they’re asking for money in exchange for their silence.

However, many users who have fallen for these online scams claim that these materials were still published on the Web and sent to their family, employers and friends even after they’ve complied with the ransom demand. This gives better leverage to the scammer in terms of asking more money, according to some cyber security specialists.

These are the two most prevalent online scams that are targeted at younger generations this 2017. You can be instantly updated about new forms of Internet fraud when you sign up at BigScammers.Com. You’ll receive these fraud alerts straight in your email inbox, which gives you the opportunity to quickly recognize and stay away from similar scams on the Web.