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Watch out for Holiday Scams

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Holiday shoppers can fall victim to con artists looking to make a quick buck. Today, cyber scammers have more ways to divert your trust and your dollars than ever before. Below are several red flags to help identify and hopefully prevent problems during your online shopping.

Steer clear of cyber-trouble this year by looking out for these scams during the holidays:

Marketplace mishaps – In addition to eBay, online marketplaces like Craigslist and Facebook Marketplace have been growing in popularity. Whether you are listing an item for a long-distance sale or scheduling a local meetup, take every precaution possible. For long-distance buys, only use trusted marketplaces that have protection programs and a strong history of positive seller ratings.

Low-price bait – Online sellers will sometimes list an out-of-stock item to lure you in, then pressure you to buy a higher priced item after you’ve found out it’s unavailable. Don’t fall for it.

Gift card phishing – Scammers send you an email that looks like it’s from someone you know. It has a link to a gift card from a legit store. But, when you click the link, you get phished and your computer or phone gets hacked. Only open gift card links from people you personally know and have given you the heads up to expect a code.

Fake charities – With the rise of crowdfunded payment sites like GoFundMe, it’s easier than ever for fraudsters to get people to donate fake causes during the holidays. Check out charities on sites like and before participating.

Delivery scams – If you get a notice for an unsuccessful delivery that redirects you to a website or to a phone number then asks you to share personal financial data, be cautious. Scammers have been known to create fake, but very convincing delivery notices in an attempt to harvest your credit card information. Authentic postal service notices won’t ask you for this kind of information.

Original post from Spiceworks

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