Tactics of a Scammer

Tips to identify a scam and what to do to fight back.
May 2, 2024
Rebecca Patridge, Fraud Analyst
Tactics of a Scammer

Scams are big business and fraudsters are good at what they do. They will make up outrageous stories, promise you the world, gain your trust and even attempt to put you in great fear — whatever it takes to get to your money and personal information. Here are some common tactics:

  1. Impersonation: Scam artists use the internet and technology to stay hidden. They love to impersonate government officials, retail business employees and even bank employees. A scammer loves to impersonate individuals from organizations you trust.

  2. Urgency: By creating a sense of urgency and applying pressure, a scammer is hoping you are distracted and that you make mistakes. Creating a false sense of urgency is a tactic used to get you to provide information you would not normally divulge. Always take caution when you feel pressured to make quick decisions.

  3. Social Media: Scammers use email, text messages and phone calls to perpetrate their activities, but social media has become a hot spot for all kinds of fraud schemes. In 2022, consumers reported losing more than $1.2 billion to fraud that started on social media. Beware of marketplace purchases, employment offers, investment deals and online relationships that lead to requests for money. Linked ads to fake stores can also intercept your personal information or funds.

  4. Isolation: Scammers often instruct you and demand that others are not to be trusted. Their frauds are more effective when they keep you from talking to trusted sources.

If you find yourself on a call or in an interaction where your information is being requested, take the following steps:

  1. Never provide usernames, passwords or access codes.
  2. Be suspicious of any unexpected contact.
  3. Slow it down. Pause, hang up the phone or ignore the message. This will give you time to research the offers and claims being made.
  4. Find help, talk to someone. Make a call to a family member or friend, possibly even a call to 911. Reach out to anyone you trust. You may also come to your local STAR branch or contact customer solutions at 1-800-395-STAR (7827).
  5. Practice online safety and security. Use different passwords for your online services, change them often and consider a reputable password manager. Use multi-factor authentication whenever possible.
  6. Do not provide personal identifying information or financial identifiers to strangers or unexpected contacts. 

STAR Bank has an entire webpage devoted to protecting yourself from cyber threats. Visit starfinancial.com/security to see this and many other articles, checklists and resources to learn how you can protect yourself and information.  


STAR Financial Bank

Phone: (260) 479-2511 ext. 2532

Website: starfinancial.com

Email: becky.patridge@starfinancial.com

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