By falling for the “419″ scams. I wrote in a previous post about how trusting adults are on the internet. Now I have some numbers to share with you on the subject. According to Ultrascan, a Dutch company, $9.3 billion was lost due to “419″ scams that originated from 152 countries (the majority of the scams came from Nigeria). You might think that the numbers may be declining because people are becoming more aware of scams, but this is not so. Sadly, the numbers increased from 2008 meaning we are not learning from our mistakes. In 2008 the loss stood at $6.3 billion. Again, I ask, why are we falling for these scams at an increasing rate? Are we that greedy that we are willing to give up our personal information in the hopes of getting money? Do we lose all common sense when riches are involved? Do we love the thrill of a gamble so much that we risk our identities and life savings on something so obviously false? Maybe it was the economy that made us do it. Some may say that it is law enforcements fault. They aren’t doing enough to prevent it. Really? Since when do we need law enforcement babysitting what we do with our money? We can’t rely on others to ensure our safety. It’s great that they are there trying to help, but the buck stops with you. It is your decision whether or not you give out your bank account information. It is your decision to give a complete stranger, who emailed you out of the blue, your credit card. I urge you to use common sense when dealing with others, especially online. Do business with respectable businesses, like INVISUS, and not with the Nigerian president’s son’s daughter who just found $10,000,000 that could be yours.

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