The world is business can be cutthroat. A successful business person should always be hyper-aware of who it is that they are dealing with. To the greatest possible extent, they must be cognizant of their motives. Most people want the same thing: to become wealthy. Unfortunately, some of them will resort to underhanded or just downright illegal means to do it. It is, therefore, crucial to adopt an almost suspicious attitude towards others. Whether you run your own business, or work at a corporation, protecting yourself should be a priority.
It is not just in the sphere of business that one has to be cautious, though. Successful people will often be the target of malice in their private lives too. It is a symptom of living a lifestyle to which others so obviously aspire. In any case, if you want to protect your wealth, here are a few things you should know:
It has become something of a joke, but the email that you receive inviting you to do business with a foreign prince was only the first incarnation of phishing scams. The criminals that try this are not as stupid as you might think. They choose their targets because they believe that they have enough disposable income to be able to invest it. Modern phishing scams use the same logic. The aspects of your life that set you apart are the also the ones which can make you vulnerable.
Some scammers guise themselves in the respectability of companies like Apple. They will attempt to induce you to share your information by telling you about your recent purchases. Others will pose as business contacts and invite you to open an attachment that describes a corporate strategy for example. These attempts are made exactly because the criminals believe the recipients are successful people. Do not fall for it.
Sometimes the degree of respectability that such criminals assume goes to amazing lengths. Bernie Madoff was a respected financier. Major international banks, as well as celebrities such as Kevin Bacon and the screenwriter Eric Roth, placed their trust in him. Ponzi schemes got their name from Charles Ponzi who attempted one in Boston in 1920. However, con artists have tried them since the 1860s. They target both corporate and personal funds.
To ensure that you do fall victim to one, carefully investigate anyone with whom you intend to do business and retain legal counsel to advise you. These schemes are especially bitter because the victims often do not get their investments back.
A wealthy person’s identity is attractive, but particularly so to those who wish to steal it. To protect yourself, you should never share personal information with anyone you do not trust. Look out for people who seem to be watching too closely as you enter passwords or PIN numbers. Invest in a shredder (check out papershredderpros.com) and destroy and sensitive documents that may compromise you. Collect your mail promptly and tell the post office to hold it if you are going to be away. If your regular bills are late for any reason, immediately contact the sender.
If you are concerned about protecting your assets, check out https://www.usa.gov/scams-and-frauds for more information.