Unfortunately, the extra hustle and bustle of the holiday season makes it a profitable time for scammers to strike. Please remain alert while shopping online and take time to check out the reputation of a vendor or charity before giving them your payment information. Here are some additional tips to keep yourself safe this year:
Open e-mail with extra caution
- Do not click on any links or download attachments unless you know the sender.
- Look out for fake ads, fake shipping notifications, and e-cards from anyone you don’t know. Any of these could be used to trick you into downloading a virus or giving away your password.
Be careful when shopping online
- Before you enter any payment information, make sure you are doing business with reputable vendors who will actually deliver their products or services as promised.
- Do an internet search on vendors and check their reviews if available.
Charity Scams and Donations
The FTC recommends looking for these warning signs that a charity could be a scam:
- The charity doesn't provide detailed information about how donations will be used.
- You’re pressured to donate- they want you to donate “right now” and won’t give you time to think it over.
- The charity asks for cash donations, gift cards, or for money to be wired to them.
In addition, there are several resources you can use to check out a charity before you decide to give them a donation: