Tips in corona times: how the pandemic can affect your approach to money

Tips in the Corona time. iStock.comDrazen Zigic

The COVID-19 outbreak brings great uncertainty: also in money matters. Find out here which sources you can trust when it comes to finances, what tricks fraudsters are now coming up with, and whether cashless payment is really the better alternative.

Keeping a clear head in uncertain times is easier said than done. Especially now you want to do everything right – and in no case take financial risks. But sometimes exactly that becomes one's undoing: in many places now favorable credits entice, it is massively advertised with top conditions and promising health products are only one mouse click away. Sometimes the need for security then simply tricks common sense.

Therefore, it is not only in crisis situations that the following applies: remain critical. And form your own opinion. Doing your own research and using trustworthy sources are essential to avoid being taken in by so-called "fake news" or online scammers.

Hackers, trojans and telephone terror in times of COVID-19

Hackers are especially active in times of crisis. In emergency situations, they have an easy game and circulate fraudulent emails to intercept money or sensitive data. They use the general uncertainty to their advantage. In our blog article "what is phishing and how do I protect myself??" Learn how scammers illegally spy on passwords and how you should act in case of emergency.

At this point we would like to point out the most common scams in times of corona:

1. The credit scam

Offers of personal loans at a lucrative interest rate with a short term are circulating especially in social networks. In most cases, the lender apparently speaks up himself, informing about the alleged top conditions.

If a user responds, personal data is requested and a copy of the identity card is demanded. The creator of the "credit offer" has only one goal: to earn money immediately by charging individual items of the alleged credit offer ahead of time. These are then, for example, "credit report fees" for which the interested user is immediately asked to pay. Who signs here carelessly, is suddenly bound to contracts, which have nothing to do with a credit.

Tip: never give your personal information to strangers online or offline.

2. The e-mail scam

You should also be critical of apparently well-known senders: for example, if your bank asks you out of the blue for your online banking login information. Or a company, from which you have perhaps never ordered anything, threatens with a collection procedure. Always pay attention to the sender's e-mail address. Even if the email header looks amazingly similar to that of your bank: in the sender line, in the event of a fraud attempt, there are often cryptic addresses that can definitely not be assigned to the bank. So be attentive.

Never open attachments from dubious mails. And do not click on links! Because then you download viruses with which fraudsters can spy on your private data. Many scammers try to put the mail recipients under enormous pressure. An e-mail like this should immediately set off alarm bells: in germany, there are legal deadlines that must be met – keep this in mind when you receive an email threatening immediate seizure of your account. Such information would come exclusively by mail!

Fraudsters want not only your money. Your private data is also valuable: it can be used to conclude contracts, place many orders and even take out loans. Legally, you are then the invoice recipient – proving otherwise is often very tedious and costs time and money

Note: we at easycredit do not send you any e-mails at the moment. All documents will be sent to them by mail by letter. Unless they have actively contacted us by e-mail. Then we will also send you our answer by e-mail.

3. The telephone scam

But scammers also want to take money out of their victims' pockets by phone call. And it currently often works like this: victims are asked on the phone for a "nest egg" for a covid 19 treatment. The caller pretends to be a distant relative, for example. Again, just because someone knows your phone number and name, you should not trust this person. This type of scam has been referred to more often in recent years as the "grandchild trick" and mainly affects older and single people.

Cash is a potential virus carrier?

Cash and atms could be potential virus vectors according to the principle of smear infection. However, there are still no valid results with regard to the corona virus. Because how long the virus is active on surfaces, one does not know yet exactly. Christian dorsten, director of the institute of virology at the charite hospital in berlin, explained that corona and influenza viruses are enveloped viruses that are "extremely sensitive" to dehydration.

So whether disinfecting cash works as a precaution against the corona virus is impossible to answer. Those who want to play it safe are currently avoiding cash. In our blog article "cashless payment with the smartphone", you can read once again how the smartphone can be used as a means of payment and how secure cashless payment is today.

The cell phone is in your hand a lot. This can, of course, also allow pathogens to get onto the cell phone. In a recent article on the subject of digital health, techniker krankenkasse explains that users spend an average of 2.Tap their smartphone 500 times a day. The display is therefore only as hygienic as your own hand hygiene. But you don't have to reach for disinfectants right away – according to the federal institute for risk assessment, their use is not necessary for healthy people in everyday life anyway. But clean your phone regularly with a damp cloth.

Our tip: not only in times of the corona crisis: only use authorized and trustworthy sources such as the robert koch institute or the ministry of health. Not every piece of information shared on social media is true. Remain level-headed and critical!