BBB warns shoppers of online scams during the holiday shopping season
Mon, 02 Dec 2013 23:51:08 GMT —
Those who choose to steer clear of Black Friday and shop for deals on Cyber Monday may be safe from the chaos but not from scams.
Fake websites and counterfeit products are things to watch out for while shopping online.
"Everybody loves a bargain, but use your head. Apply some common sense and ask if you think that's really a good deal. If the product isn't going to last, and if you don't know who you're shopping with, you may not even get that item to begin with. It may not come in the mail. It may just be a site used to steal your personal information," said Janna Kiehl, Better Business Bureau CEO.
The BBB said shoppers should look out for secure websites, use a credit card rather than a debit card, buy from familiar websites, and monitor financial accounts.
Online scams are usually dealt with on a federal level, so it's difficult for local law enforcement to intervene.
"We can't send a couple of detectives to southern California or Canada, for that matter, to go look for somebody who may or may not have sold something, so we are very limited to that. So that's where it becomes a federal investigation more times than not. And just like anybody else, they've got thousands and thousands of cases that they may or may not be able to devote as much time to," said Cpl. Jerry Neufeld, Amarillo Police Department.
"If you've been victimized by one of these bogus sites, of course we want to know about it, so we ask that you file a complaint. The FTC would like to know about it as well because they work daily, along with the BBB to take down these bogus websites. Unfortunately, new sites pop up as soon as old ones go down so it is a battle," Kiehl said.