10 Holiday Scams Across Connecticut and the Northeast Including One With Puppies
It's so disgusting that scams exist. They never go away and we've learned to accept that these lowlifes will always find a way to steal, however, there's something especially despicable about doing this during the holidays.
1. Social Media Ads
You may be enticed with free a gift or free shipping in these misleading ads. The BBB Scam Tracker receives daily reports from people who never received items they purchased or discover they're being charged a monthly fee for a free trial they never signed up for. Or you receive the item and it's fake or looks completely different.
2. Social Media Gift Exchanges
Wow, these have been around for several years now, and for some reason, this scheme must be working because it keeps popping up each holiday season. The older version was called "Secret Sister." A newer version of this scam revolves around exchanging bottles of wine, purchasing $10 gifts online, or sending money in a "pay it forward" Secret Santa or secret dog.
Click here for more on social media gift exchange scams from the BBB.
3. Holiday Apps
There are plenty of apps, sometimes free, where children can video chat live with Santa, light the menorah, watch Santa feed live reindeer, track his sleigh on Christmas Eve, or relay their holiday wish lists. The bogus ones may contain malware or inadvertently sign you up for a monthly charge.
Click here for more on holiday apps from the BBB.
4. Fake Texts Saying You've Been Hacked
The BBB Scam Tracker hears daily from people scammed into thinking their Amazon, Paypal, Netflix, or bank account has been hacked. Always contact the business directly and don't click on any links.
Click here for more on compromised account scams from the BBB.
5. Free Gift Cards
Scammers love to use the word 'free' to lure you in and take advantage of you. They mainly focus on getting personal information from you in exchange for a free gift card, often impersonating legit companies. Or they tell you you won a prize. This can happen via text, email, or a phone call.
Click here for more on gift card scams from the BBB.
6. Temporary holiday jobs
Seasonal workers are big business for retailers and those looking to make extra money. Be very wary of applications asking for personal information because they often mimic real companies.
Click here for more on holiday job scams from the BBB.
7. Look-Alike Websites
With endless emails offering deals, sales, and bargains, be careful when clicking on links. For the most part, these look like real websites and emails from real companies to trick you into downloading malware, making dead-end purchases, and sharing private information. Go directly to the official website, always.
Click here to learn how to spot a fake website from the BBB.
8. Fake Charities
We all want to help where we can with charitable donations. So unless you know the charity personally or it's your go-to, avoid unfamiliar organizations. Only donate on the charity's official website, and again, if you're familiar with it.
Click here to learn more about fake charities from the BBB.
9. Fake Shipping
Scammers are using this with links to get your private information or download malware onto your device so this scam goes back to online purchases or email offers from what turn out to be fake companies that appear real.
Click here to learn more about delivery and package scams from the BBB.
10. Puppy Scams
Many of us turn to the internet when looking for a new furry family member however the BBB says that a shocking 80% of sponsored pet advertisements are most likely fake just trying to get your money. Always see the pet in person and research.
Click here to learn more about pet scams from the BBB.
Meanwhile, click here for the latest 'caught on camera' traffic ticket scam.
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