Different types of fraud

There are many different forms of scamming. Read and learn about the different variations and be one step ahead of the criminals.

Vishing

A fraudster calls you and pretends to be the representative of a bank, an electronics chain or the authorities. He or she often claims that the matter is urgent and tries to get the victim to use his or her online access codes and disclose them to him or her. The purpose of the call is to log into the victim’s Netbank to transfer funds or to find out the victim’s online banking credentials.

Tips:

  • Never disclose your personal online access codes or account information to anyone else.
  • Never use your online access codes if someone contacting you requests or demands you to do so.
  • If you are suspicious, disconnect the call and call the person again to check if he or she is the person he or she claims to be.

Phishing

You may receive an email requesting you to update your account information, change your password etc. The sender of the message may claim that you have won a large sum of money. Sometimes the sender may seem to be the bank wanting to you to confirm your account or card number or the tax administration informing you of a tax rebate. Most of these messages include a link. By clicking the link, you can ‘confirm’ your account or card number.

Tips:

  • Never fill in your personal data in an email form.
  • Be careful if you receive email requesting your personal data and/or an email with spelling errors.
  • Do not open links in unknown email messages.

Always check the correctness of email messages by clicking the sender's email address. If the address has been written in a suspicious form, the message has not been sent by an official party.

Smishing

Fraudsters can also contact you by an SMS. The purpose of the message is often to get you to open a link and disclose personal data the fraudsters can use later.

Tips:

  • Do not open links you have received from unknown senders.
  • Do not disclose personal data, card information or online access codes.

Fake invoices

Fake invoices are often sent by email. The fake invoice requests you to pay for a product or service which you or your company have not ordered or which has never been delivered. Sometimes the seller may also call and demand money over the phone claiming that the company has concluded an agreement with them.

Consider the following:

  • Is the invoice sensible? Have we purchased this product/service?
  • Does the invoice clearly indicate that it is really an offer?
  • Is the account number the same as in previous invoices?

You can also search for the company sending the invoice on Google. It is often easy to find information on companies sending fake invoices.

Identity theft

Identity theft means using another person’s identity for buying goods, making orders or taking our loans in the other person's name, for example.

Tips:

  • Consider carefully what kind of information you reveal on the internet and in social media.
  • Activate the ‘Oma Luottokielto’ service offered by Suomen Asiakastieto

Investment scam

You have received an email or phone call from a foreign investment adviser who wants you to invest your savings in equities or funds which have ‘good’ future prospects. Or perhaps you’ve received an offer to invest in cryptocurrencies and binary options which seem almost too good to be true. Be careful before you close a deal. The message is most likely an investment scam and you will never recover the funds you have invested. Usually, the scams begin with an opening fee of 250 euros which is debited from your credit card or the “investment adviser” asks you to confim a payment with your access codes in order to get the investment done on time.

However, if the offer truly interests you, make sure you know what you are paying for and to whom.

Tips:

  • Does the company have a licence? How long has the company been engaged in investment activities?
  • Serious companies rarely offer investment possibilities over the phone, especially in the evening.
  • Check if the company is on the Finnish Financial Supervisory Authority's warning list and (link) and try to find other information on the company on the internet.

Love scam

Love scams are usually executed online in Facebook or a dating website. The scammer is often “a soldier on a foreign mission” or “an engineer travelling a lot abroad”. The scammer contacts his victim and they start to exchange messages and talk over the phone. The contact can continue for months and soon the scammer will start to talk about love and a future together. After some time, the scammer starts asking for money for different purposes; hospital bills and travels, for example.

Tips:

  • Be aware of persons who ask you to send them money.
  • Never send money to a person whom you have never met and who requests you to send him/her money on internet.
  • If you notice that you have been scammed, inform the bank about what happened and report it to the police. You are not the only nor the last one to be a victim of this type of scam.

You can get peer support by contacting Victim Support FinlandOpens new window. You can also call them anonymously.

Money Mule

What is a money mule?

A money mule is a person who is recruited for receiving and transferring money through their account. Typically, the mule is paid a small commission for the money transferred. The victims of scams (such as romance scams) are also often used for hiding the origin of illegally acquired funds.

How to avoid becoming a money mule?

You are responsible for knowing the transactions on your account. If you are not sure about a transaction, contact your bank or the police preferably before making any credit transfers. As a rule, suspicious cases are investigated by the police, and the bank may have to restrict the customer’s services.

What if I have been used as money mule?

Contact the local police and tell them what has happened. Also contact your own bank and ask for a thorough investigation of the payments you have made.

CEO fraud

In a CEO scam, a criminal is pretending to be a company CEO or some other person belonging to the company's management. The criminal sends a scam email to one of the company's employees requesting him or her to urgently transfer a large sum of money abroad.

Tips:

  • If you receive payment instructions by email, don’t follow them.
  • Train your personnel to identify the risks and secure ways of working.
  • Call the sender of the email and check if the message is genuine.
  • If you feel uncertain, consult a colleague.

Always contact the bank if you have received payment instructions and suspect you are trying to be scammed / have been scammed.

Recommendable means of protection

By following our recommendations, you can avoid fraudsters.

Read more

Common terms linked to security and scams

Here you can find the common terms linked to security and scams.

Read more

More information about Security

Learn to identify them, stay alert and you will not be deceived.

Back to the front page of security