This week: Cyber 3-2-1 took a short break due to a bereavement in the family. (RIP to Geraldine: A hurricane of a woman).

But life must go on, so this week:

3 – Where are many over-40s now investing their money?

2 – Did you think there were only two things certain in life?

1 – Why aren’t your valuables just financial?

 


 

3 – If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.. a scam.

“Investment fraud rocketed by more than 90% last year [and] the vast majority of those affected are aged over 40”

This is according to a recent article in The Journal, after Ireland’s police force warned of sophisticated criminals using online and social media ads to promote non-existent schemes, leading to significant financial losses for victims. Almost 70% of the people fooled last year were male (compared to about 50% in 2020).

My view? The vast majority of victims were aged over 40, because people under 40 invest all their money in rent.

So what? Use exercise extreme caution with investment opportunities, especially those advertised on social media or received via unsolicited approaches. If it sounds too good to be true, you have to assume it’s a scam.
 


 

2 – There are only two three things certain in life.

“Scammers are relentless in their attempts to obtain sensitive financial and personal information, and impersonating the IRS remains a favorite tactic”.

This is according to a recent warning from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the USA. The IRS warns about the ongoing threats of phishing and smishing scams, urging taxpayers to stay vigilant. These scams aim to steal sensitive information by impersonating the IRS through unsolicited emails and texts.

My view? The problem is not unique to the US – I frequently get messages from the Revenue Commissioners here in Ireland about unpaid taxes. I think my concern about online scams is a perfectly good reason to ignore them.

So what? In the words of Benjamin Franklin (1789), “in this world nothing can be said to be certain, except death and taxes [and online scams]”.
 


 

1 – Your valuables aren’t just financial.

“Being locked out of a Facebook or Instagram [or LinkedIn] account can be catastrophic for account holders”.

This is according to a letter co-signed by 40 US Attorneys General and recently sent to Meta. The letter spotlights a 270% increase in account takeovers from 2022 to 2023, and questions Meta’s response and preventive measures against such attacks on its Facebook and Instagram platforms.

My view? If someone was able to take over control of your LinkedIn account, imagine the damage they could do to your professional reputation? And let’s not even think about all the cat pictures they could share if they hacked into your Facebook account.

So what? When you think about protecting your valuable online accounts, don’t just focus on your financial accounts.
 


 

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