Scams – what to do if you’ve been affected

August 22, 2022

Do you think you have been the victim of a scam?

A scam is a scheme or plan to try to con you out of your money or personal information.

Scams can take many different forms such as phishing, premium-rate phone calls, pyramid schemes and more. Your best defence is to stay informed, alert, and secure. However, even while taking precautions, it is possible to become the victim of a scam. In this article you will find advice on what you should do if you think you have been scammed.

Golden Rules:

  • Cease all communication with the scammer straight away. Scammers are experienced in trying to convince you that they are legitimate. Do not give them the opportunity. Stop replying.
  • Do not give them any more money.
  • If you paid money by credit or debit card, tell your bank or card provider immediately.
  • Report the incident to your local Garda station. This is a criminal matter.
  • Collect together any records you have about the scam ( e.g. emails or other communications).
  • Reset your passwords, and update the anti-virus software on your devices
  • Report the incident to for advice and to help prevent other people being caught by the same scam.

Top Tip

Your bank can freeze your card and issue you a new one. This is important if you have a recurring payment with the scammers or if they have access to your card details.

Can I get my money back?

It can be possible to get your money back after you’ve been scammed. It depends on what happened and how you paid the scammer.

Unauthorised transactions:

Money should only be taken from your account if you authorised (or allowed) the transaction. If you notice an unauthorised transaction on your account, contact your bank immediately.

Purchase from scammer using debit card, credit card, or PayPal:

Ask your bank or credit card provider to reverse the transaction through a process known as ‘chargeback’. Read more about chargebacks.

Bank transfer of money to scammer:

Bank transfers are difficult to trace. But, the quicker you act the better. Get in contact with your bank as soon as possible.

Money transfer service:

If you used a wire service such as MoneyGram, PayPoint or Western Union, then  getting your money back is unlikely.

Top Tip

Remember, if something seems too good to be true, it usually is. If you are unsure if something is a scam, you can read more about how to spot scams.

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