How To Protect Yourself When Joining Online Competitions
Online competitions can be a bane and boon of your life. You can win a wide variety of products and services from gadgets to vacations and even thousands of cold cash. But if you are careless, it is not just about identity theft that you have to deal with. You might have not realized that you just handed your valuable financial information to online thieves on a silver platter. Imagine all your bank account details being used in nefarious activities.
Fortunately, there are simple ways to stay safe when entering these online contests.
- Determine the reliability of websites. Research first about the websites before you join. Maybe what they offer is too good to be true and it might be too late before you find out that you have been fooled. Do not give away your personal information too eagerly. Remember, the prizes might be baits to a trap so exercise restraint, trust your instincts and learn to walk away early on.
- Protect your personal details as much as you can. Your personal information includes your full name, birth date and address; though you think you provide this information to people or institutions, it can make you an easy prey for identity thieves. You can just imagine the crimes that can be done in your name if, and when you divulge your social security and taxpayer numbers, your bank account details, and your credit card information, among other sensitive information. Again, if you have the nagging feeling that something fishy is going on, don’t stop to smell the roses of the high-stakes prizes. Keeping your identity safe from the hands of cyber criminals is more important than any prize at stake, even a promised million dollars in cash. Also, be sure to keep your account name and password as secure as possible from the prying eyes of others especially when you are using a shared computer.
- Responding to emails promising fabulous prizes and easy money is a no-no. There are no such things. The best way to win in online contests is to join in one, follow the instructions, and then hope that Lady Luck is on your side. You may even be getting malware on your computer than can cause its crash. You can even join online skills contests if you have a knack for photography, cooking, art, and writing to name a few. You can also create different email accounts so you can enter a single competition multiple times.
Online scams can cost you a lot of money and cause a great deal of distress. By following these simple tips, you can protect yourself from prize draws that might be too good to be true.