Holiday shopping is in full gear, and scammers are out to steal your holiday cheer.
From non-delivery and non-payment to phishing for your information, the FBI says these are the easiest ways scammers are targeting you online during the holiday season.
A non-delivery scam is when you pay for something and it never shows up. A non-payment scam is the opposite. You sell something and never get paid.
- Check online reviews and complaints through sites like BBB.Org or RipOffReport.Com
- Stick with sites you know
- If selling, check the buyer's ratings and ask for payment upfront
- If buying, avoid sellers who post items under one name, but ask you to pay to someone else
- Be cautious if the seller asks you to send money through a wire transfer, gift cards, a prepaid credit card or even a bank to bank transfer - It's almost impossible to recover the money.
- Use a credit card - By law, you can dispute charges up to 60 days after purchase and get a response in 30 days. Debit cards do not have that protection.
- Be aware of misspellings, they may be a sign your not dealing with a legit company - To be safe type a company's website into your browser versus clicking on a link.
If you do get scammed, contact your bank immediately to stop payment. Also, file a complaint with the FBI's Internet Crime Division.