On the seventh day of Christmas… Online scams are all but true

December 17, 2018 12:00 pm Ernest Bankhead

Most of us will have come across the age-old problem, what do you get the person who has everything? For most of us, the solution lies in giving gift cards, the perfect solution for that difficult relative or friend. A gift card enables them to choose their own gift or a ticket means they can attend an event, a nice change from the usual socks and perfume! 

However, gift cards are being exploited and used as a method of targeting online shoppers.

The Federal Trade Commission and Better Business Bureau  said fraudsters have started requesting gift cards as payment for online purchases.

Fake websites are being created and gift cards (which are untraceable) are being requested as a method of payment. Once the gift card information is sent, the money is lost and no goods are received by the consumer.

“It’s essentially mailing them an envelope full of money,” (David Newman, The Federal Trade Commission during an interview with CBS Boston).

To keep yourself safe online there are a number of tips you should follow:

  • If the price seems to good to be true, there’s probably something wrong 
  • Beware of high-pressure sales 
  • Watch out for sellers who won’t take credit cards
  • Check for legitimate contact information
  • Make sure websites are secure and authenticated

Always question a deal that seems too good to be true, fraudsters know we all love a bargain! If in doubt, don’t give out your details.