Scams Targeting Small Businesses – Beware

Being a business owner, you have many responsibilities to take care of so that your business runs. When it comes to spending money in the right place, new entrepreneurs have the most chances to fail at that. By spending money, we refer to the money that businesses tend to lose because of clever scammers and thieves. While scamming might not be your top priority to keep an eye out for, you must protect your money from dishonest schemes. Scammers are mostly known to have their businesses, or at least they pretend to. Both consumers and other entrepreneurs need to keep an eye out for them, so they don’t end up becoming a victim of their treachery. To ensure your business’s safety from scammers that target businesses, here is a list of common scams and how they can be avoided.

Example of a scam email

1. Fishy Emails
One of the most common ways businesses get scammed is by thieves who send you emails intending to capture your valuable data. These emails will redirect you to a website where you would have to enter your bank info or credit card numbers. You will most likely be tricked by these scammers pretending to be the ATO saying that your business is being audited. To avoid this from happening, make sure your anti-virus software is updated and do not click on any download links from unknown sources.

See Phishing Scam from Scamwatch

2. Fake Bills
Your business probably pays several bills monthly. It is easy for scammers to slide in a fake bill of their own. You would be tricked into paying for advertising that you never made or merchandise that you never ordered. The scammers are smart and can go as far as impersonating your regular suppliers to appear trustworthy. Keep an eye out for these thieves and employ an accountant who handles the billings accurately.

3. Donations
This one isn’t always directed at businesses. But scammers often show up at your office doorstep and ask for donations or funds for a local social objective. While most businesses can see this as a good way to gain some reputation in their customers’ eyes, the same money would be much better spent on marketing. The scammers will try to persuade you to take a “quick action” as if the children in the orphanage are starving if you don’t pay for their food. Make sure you don’t buy their lies and ask them for identification as well as other details. Keep your employees aware of falling into these traps to save your money from thieves.

Those were three of the top ways that scammers target small businesses. Scammers are most likely to act as if they’re individuals associated with higher authorities. This is to make victims feel safer as they get looted without having a clue. The best and most effective ways of not falling into their traps are to invest in security cameras, raise awareness in your employees, and do not hesitate to ask for receipts and identification from suspects. Following these tips will decrease your chances of falling for a scam to the lowest!

If you experience or know somebody who fell victim from these schemes. In Australia you can Verify or Report a Scam at ATO(Australian Taxation Office).