With the arrival of the holiday season comes the need for shoppers to beware of various convoluted scams and online fraud, reports CNBC.
An Overview of What to Watch Out for
The hundreds of billions of dollars which consumers will projectively spend this year serve as a beacon for scammers and other fraudsters. A Better Business Bureau spokesperson, Katherine Hutt, explained why in additional details:
“People need to be more aware this time of year. They’re rushing and trying to get a lot done. Scammers will take advantage of that opportunity.”
Due to the higher risks of consumers falling victim to various cons, the Better Business Bureau has provided a list of specific hoaxes to beware of.
Online Purchase Scams
Online purchase scams are most commonly enacted via email. In most cases, the victim will receive seemingly innocuous links which actually lead to malicious websites. Once the consumer clicks on the website, it may attempt to extract personal information from them. Moreover, any links which consumers click should always begin with an “https” web address. A lock symbol should also proceed the aforementioned web address upon clicking on the link.
Phony Shipping Alerts
Similarly to online purchase scams, phony shipping alerts generally arrive to their targets via email. The email is usually made out to look like it’s from a shipping company or major retail store. In essence, phony shipping alerts state that delivery or shipping complications have arisen. They then urge the victim to click on a link in order to ascertain more information. Unfortunately, upon clicking on said link, the consumer has officially and unknowingly opened themselves up to downloading malware on their device.