Discord scams exposed: how to spot and avoid the most common scams

Discord is a widely used communication platform that enables users to connect with others worldwide. With its user-friendly interface and vast features, Discord has become the go-to platform for gamers, content creators, and even businesses. However, with the growth of Discord’s popularity, scammers have found ways to take advantage of unsuspecting users. Discord scams can come in many forms and be challenging to recognize if you’re unfamiliar with the red flags to look out for. In this article, we’ll explore the most common Discord scams and provide tips on how to avoid them.

What are Discord scams, and why are they a problem?

Discord scams are fraudulent activities designed to deceive and steal from Discord users. Scammers often use social engineering tactics to trick users into giving away personal information, such as passwords or credit card details, or even try to install malware on their devices. These scams can be a major problem for Discord users as they can lead to financial loss, identity theft, and even blackmail.

Discord scams are so prevalent because the platform has become a popular hub for various communities. With millions of users from different backgrounds and interests, it can be easy for scammers to blend in and target a large number of people. Additionally, Discord’s anonymity can make it challenging to identify and prosecute scammers.

Common Discord scams – fake giveaways, phishing attempts, impersonation, and more

Everybody is attracted to giveaways, and the thought of winning something for free attracts users. This is why fake giveaways have become one of the most common Discord scams. Scammers will create a fake account or impersonate a well-known user or organization and offer a prize to users who participate in a giveaway. However, the prize is usually fake, and the scammer will ask for personal information or a fee to receive the prize.

One of Discord’s most common fake giveaway scams is the Nitro Plan giveaway (a subscription in Discord to enable special features). These attacks start with a direct message from an unknown contact, which includes an offer to join the paid service. The scammers claim to have an extra Discord Nitro account that they are willing to give away freely. All you have to do is follow an embedded link. When you click on the link, you land on a spoofed website, which might look like a real Discord login page but is a duplicate site. Attackers can get access to any personal information you enter here, such as your Discord login credentials or credit card numbers.

scam example 1 – by Discord

On the other hand, phishing attempts are another common type of Discord scam. Scammers will create a fake login page or send a link to a phishing site that looks like the official Discord website. They will then ask users to log in with their Discord credentials, which the scammer will steal. This can affect the stolen account and even lead to further attacks on any other accounts connected with your email address, as a lead taken from your discord profile.

Impersonation is also a popular tactic used by attackers. They will create a fake account or impersonate a well-known user or organization and send messages to users asking for personal information or money. They may also ask users to click on a link that will install malware on their device, which can lead to stealing credentials, business disruption, hijacking accounts and much worse. Other Discord scams include malware distribution that tricks users into downloading and installing malware on their device, fake friend requests that are looking to get users to give away their personal information, and even fake Discord Servers that trick users into joining and giving away personal information.

How to spot a Discord scam – red flags to look out for

Spotting a Discord scam can be challenging, but there are several red flags to look out for. One of the most significant red flags is an unsolicited message from someone you don’t know. Scammers often send users messages out of the blue, asking for personal information or money. So a heads up, and be extremely cautious if a person you don’t know is approaching you and asking questions.

Another red flag is a message that contains a suspicious link. Scammers will often send links to phishing sites or malware-infected websites. These links can be disguised as legitimate links, so it’s essential to be cautious when clicking on any link sent to you. Check everything before clicking away; if you notice a strange pattern, do not click on it.

On the other hand, if we are talking about fake giveaways, the positive thing is that they are easy to spot if you know what to look for. If a prize seems too good to be true, it probably is. Additionally, if the person offering the prize is not a verified user or a trusted organization, it’s best to refrain from participating.

What to do if you’ve fallen for a Discord scam – steps to take to protect yourself and your community

If you’ve fallen for a Discord scam, it is important to remain calm and take action immediately to protect yourself and your community. The first step is to change your Discord password and enable two-factor authentication because it will prevent the scammer from accessing your account.

Next, report the scam to Discord’s support team. They will investigate the incident and take appropriate action against the scammer. If the scammer has asked for personal information or money, contact your bank or credit card company to report the incident and freeze any accounts that may have been compromised. Finally, warn your community about the scam. Please share your experience on social media or Discord channels to alert others to the scam and help them avoid falling victim to it.

fake giveaway exaple – by Discord

Best practices for safe and secure use of Discord

To avoid falling victim to Discord scams further in the future, it’s crucial to follow best practices for safe and secure platform use. First and most important is never to share your password or personal information with anyone, even if they claim to be a trusted user or organization. Always verify the identity of the person or organization you’re interacting with.

Additionally, it’s important to stay informed about the latest Discord scams and how to avoid them. Follow Discord’s official social media channels and keep up with news and updates from trusted sources. Finally, use antivirus software and keep your device’s operating system and software up to date to protect against malware and other security threats. This way, you can always stay alert and protect your device from getting infected.

Kristi Shehu is a Cyber Security Engineer (Application Security) and Cyber Journalist based in Albania. She lives and breathes technology, specializing in crafting content on cyber news and the latest security trends, all through the eyes of a cyber professional. Kristi is passionate about sharing her thoughts and opinions on the exciting world of cyber security, from breakthrough emerging technologies to dynamic startups across the globe.