Members of the armed forces are trained to protect their nation, but in today’s digital landscape, a new threat has emerged – scams. The rise of online scams targeting military personnel is a growing concern, and staying vigilant is crucial to ensure the security of personal and financial information. Discover common scams, tips for identifying them, and advice on protecting armed forces members. 

Understanding Common Scams

Impersonation Scams

In this ploy, scammers pose as family members, fellow employees, and even organizations, exploiting community trust. They may use fake profiles or even reach out via phone or social media, claiming to be someone familiar. Vigilance is crucial; genuine communications from anyone typically occur through secure channels. 

Phishing Emails and Websites

Emails can often come through looking inconspicuous, urging you to click on links or provide personal information. These phishing attempts can compromise sensitive data. Verifying the sender’s email address and avoiding clicking on unfamiliar links are essential precautions. 

Investment Scams

Scammers target people with promises of lucrative investment opportunities. These schemes often involve high returns with little risk. Exercise caution, thoroughly researching investment opportunities and consulting with financial experts, like our advisors at AFBN. 

Charity Scams

Heartless scammers exploit the generosity of community members by posing as charitable organizations. Charity scams often peak during times of crisis. It’s crucial to verify the legitimacy of any charity before making donations, ensuring contributions reach their intended recipients. 

Romance Scams

Preying on emotions, romance scams involve building online relationships with volatile internet users. The scammer gains trust before requesting money for various reasons. Aim to approach online relationships with caution and avoid sending money to unknown individuals. 

Tips for Identifying Scams

Recognizing Red Flags in Communications

You should be wary of unsolicited communications, especially those pressuring for immediate action. Genuine communications are typically official and don’t involve urgent requests, especially for personal information.

Verifying Legitimacy

Cross-checking contact information, researching online reviews, and consulting with trusted colleagues or advisors can help verify the legitimacy of organizations and individuals. Scammers often create elaborate facades that may not withstand scrutiny. 

Safeguard Personal Information

Implementing Strong Password Practices

Be sure to use complex passwords and update them regularly. Passwords should be a combination of letters, numbers, and symbols to enhance security. 

Utilizing Two-Factor Authentication

Adding an extra layer of protection, two-factor authentication significantly reduces the risk of unauthorized access. Enable this feature whenever possible. 

Being Cautious with Social Media Sharing 

Limiting the information shared on social media is crucial. Scammers can exploit details such as deployment dates, locations, and personal relationships. 

Reporting Scams

Encouraging a culture of reporting within your community is vital. You should never hesitate to report suspicious activities, contributing to the collective effort to safeguard the community. 

Resources for Further Assistance

The Armed Forces Benefits Network can offer valuable resources on scam prevention. Government agencies specialize in combating scams, and online tools can help you keep you safe. Stay informed and take precautions when it comes to your financial, deployment, or any other personal information. 


Armed forces members face multifaceted challenges, and online scams add an extra layer of complexity. By understanding the nuances of each scam, recognizing red flags, and adopting proactive measures, servicemembers can build a defense against digital threats. Share this information with your community to create awareness and promote ongoing education on scam prevention. The Armed Forces Benefits Network is here to help you combat adverse threats and set you up for a successful financial future. Learn more on our website or find the nearest benefits specialist near you!