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Online Shopping

By Scam Awareness | August 2, 2018

Shopping online has become a weekly pastime for most people in the U.S - 79% of consumers shop online and 51% have made a purchase on their phone. While there are lots of websites to shop at, there are also just as many scams that can exploit consumers online.

  • Overly Generous Coupons: You might have encountered sites that advertise coupons or discounts that sound too good to be true. Fake deal sites will ask for personal information in order to receive coupons or discounts. This can lead to potential identity theft or the sale of your personal information. Instead, stick to well known and reputable websites when looking for deals.
  • Phishing: Phishing emails attempt to trick users into sharing their personal information. These emails are disguised as authentic emails from trustworthy companies like your bank, credit card company, or even an online retailer. You might see something like an "order confirmation" email, even though you haven't placed any orders. These fraud emails often include a link that can steal information from your device when you click on it. Look out for misspellings, incorrect grammar, or suspicious sender addresses. Be wary of emails that confirm an order for something you did not buy.
  • Untrustworthy Seller: Some sites or sellers could potentially be scammers. These sellers may send products that are nothing like what is advertised on the site. Review customer comments and ratings to see if others have been scammed by this seller or site. Untrustworthy sites will also often have vague or unclear refund policies. Always check their return/exchange policy and make sure to contact customer service to confirm. If the response from the seller is cryptic, you may be dealing with a shady retailer.

Online shopping is now a huge part of our lives, and it is a great way to find products from all over the world. The next time you shop online, look out for these scams.

Stay Safe!

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