5 Common Online Scams Affecting Teens and Tweens

Online Scams

Introduction Online Scams:

Common Online Scams targeting tweens and teens have become increasingly prevalent in today’s digital age. Virtual entertainment, informing applications, and web-based gaming incited youngsters to be more associated than at any other time, making them defenseless against different types of extortion. Scammers often use clever tactics to deceive and manipulate young victims, like acting like companions or offering counterfeit awards. As a result, parents and educators must familiarize and designate young people to stay safe online and avoid falling victim to these scams, with TiSPY offering an exhaustive answer for observing and dealing with kids’ computerized communications.

Normal Internet-based Tricks Influencing Adolescents and Tweens

In the present mechanized age, the predominance of online tricks focusing on youngsters and tweens has reached concerning levels. As young individuals lower themselves in electronic diversion, informing applications, and web-based gaming, they become accidental focuses for tricksters trying to take advantage of their trust and naivety. The following are five normal web-based tricks that present huge dangers to the advanced security of adolescents and tweens:

1. Social Media Scams

Social media is prime territory for Internet-based scams that target teens. Teenagers, after all, are social animals, and recent pandemic lockdowns have helped create a perfect storm of teen anxiety and scammer opportunities that continue to play out on most of the major social media platforms.

Among scams common to social media are those involving identity theft. Chief among these are surveys or contests that request personal information and catfishing in which the scammer poses as someone they are not and befriends the victim intending to take money, personal information, or more.

Though these are the most common social media scams, many other fraudulent activities appear on these platforms, including most of the rest of the scams in this article.

Online Shopping Scams

“Teens and millennials are also big online spenders for expensive goods,” says Weisman. “Often they are lured into phony websites that take their money and sell them nothing, lured into providing personal information used for purposes of identity theft or tricked into clicking on links and downloading malware.”

Finding the latest iPhone, designer handbag, or state-of-the-art headphones for a fraction of the retail price sounds too good to be true. Unfortunately, that’s exactly what it is: too good to be true. When paid for, online bargain-basement-priced goods rarely arrive.

Another version of this scam involves knock-offs or counterfeit products pretending to be the real deal. Once the province of shady back-alley salespeople from the trunk of a car, online knock-off sales have found a new home and, in bargain-hunting teens, new victims.

Identity Theft

This scam deserves special mention because it is one of the most prevalent and also because social media is just one online area where it appears. Others include websites, email, messaging apps, and pop-up windows.

The naiveté of youth often makes it easier for would-be identity thieves to phish for information. Young people don’t always realize that they’re handing over personal data that can be used for identity theft. This is illustrated in a survey that found a much higher rate (15%) of identity theft among those 18 to 29 years old than those 45 and older (8%).

Online Scams

Skill or Talent Contests

Another popular online scam that thrives outside of social media is a variation on acting and modeling scams, which are also alive and well on the Internet. More recent scams involve skill-based contests in which teens are urged to enter artwork, music compositions, or creative writing to win money and, more importantly, fame.

These scams may or may not require an entry fee, and if the teen wins, even more cash. Spoiler alert: The entry does win, and the additional fee or fees supposedly help with the cost of promotion, publication, and so forth.

Scholarship and Grant Scams

As college costs loom and young people (and their parents) worry about financing higher education, skepticism about unsolicited scholarships and grant offers may not be as strong as it should be. The goal of these scams may be simple identity theft, or it may be a more direct attempt to charge for so-called proprietary information about scholarships or free money the public doesn’t know exists.

These bogus offers sometimes guarantee you will get your money back if you don’t receive the scholarship; special fee-based scholarships; and even unclaimed scholarships are only available through a special fund you can access by—you guessed it—paying a fee.

How To Protect Your Child From Online Scams

Set parental controls on smartphones

One of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) top tips to protect children from scams and unsavory content is the most obvious: Install filtering and blocking tools, stop outgoing content to prevent personal information from being shared, use monitoring software, and limit screen time. We have articles about locking down your kid’s iPhone, how children are defeating parental controls, and talking to your kids about online safety to help you get started.

Properly install file-sharing software

If you thought peer-to-peer (P2P) file-sharing software went the way of Napster, then boomer, you’re mistaken. Copyright issues aside, if your teen is using BitTorrent, InterPlanetary File System, or another program on your computer to share music, movies, or other files, there is a good chance they’re unintentionally supplying your private information and files to numerous people.

The FTC recommends that if you continue to use P2P file-sharing, install it yourself to ensure nothing secret is shared. Also, instruct your kids to scan downloaded files with security software to ensure it’s free of spyware, malware, and other viruses.

Don’t send money to strangers

Romance scams don’t just happen to grandma. Fake celebrity accounts, bots, and other scammers promise to love, concert tickets, and merch if your kid will send them money electronically.

“If teens get requests for money on online games, social media, or even via text, remind them to never send money to people you do not know because you may never get it back,” says Porche.

Never give out information for a perk or prize

In the world of online gaming, power-ups can come with a price. Porche advises that if your child receives an offer for online “skins” or other perks for some personal info, they shouldn’t share it. The same goes for online quizzes or games on social media, as scammers can use them to harvest personal data, including birthdays, addresses, and other information.

Checking On the Web Activities

In the present advanced age, observing your kids’ web-based exercises is fundamental to shielding them from tricks and other web-based risks. Screen their web-based entertainment accounts, confine admittance to specific sites, and instruct them on the most proficient method to detect expected tricks. Further, consider involving parental control software like TiSPY to help protect your children while skimming the web.


All in all, the advanced world offers monstrous opportunities for learning and development, yet it additionally harbors risks, especially for our teenagers and tweens. As capable grown-ups, it falls upon us to direct and safeguard them in this virtual domain. By remaining informed about normal internet-based tricks and using apparatuses like TiSPY parental control programming, we can engage ourselves to protect our youngsters from hurt. We should focus on their security and guarantee that their internet-based encounters are not defaced by duplicity and double-dealing. Together, we should explore the computerized scene with cautiousness, care, and a faithful obligation to our youngsters’ prosperity.

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