We are all targets of potential scams. Factor in the dramatic increase in new technologies and someone, somewhere is looking to separate you from your money.
Quantity-wise, most approaches are likely to come through a telephone or via your computer. We gave up our landline a few years back when it became apparent that the majority of people that knew our number lived overseas.
One really has to wonder about the effectiveness of the Do Not Call registry and what responsibility lies with telephone landline service providers. I’ve spoken with both but I’m not hopeful. It’s hard to fix a problem that only they can’t seem to understand.
If you have a website chances are you have had numerous calls from Search Engine Optimization “experts.” A recent peddler with a heavy accent cited that his search for financial planners in Campbell River did not yield my site. He was however able to recite a list of competitors’.
I dangled him for 10 minutes before sharing the news that my site featured prominently and wished him luck in finding a more honourable profession.
Ignore requests from “look-alike” emails requesting urgent attention to your bank, credit card or tax accounts. Internet service providers don’t call you at home when you have a problem with your computer; you have to call them. Your responsibility for the use of credit cards is the safe care of PINs and passwords. Learn about how to create stronger passwords, verification questions and update providers with any changes to your contact information.
When in doubt, look-up the telephone number of the institution in a directory and speak with a representative.
Murray Callaghan is a Certified Financial Planner with 15 years’ industry experience. He partners with external portfolio managers and insurance providers. Reach him at 250.286.9968 or visit his website at www.crwealthmanagement.ca.