It’s holiday shopping time, which means scammers and identity thieves are waiting to snare people eager to find deals or hard-to-find items online. Fortunately for us, there are tried-and-true ways to avoid being taken in by online holiday-shopping scams.
“Scammers use the holiday season to swindle unsuspecting victims through fraudulent emails and other schemes,” Bitdefender’s Alina Bizga warned in a recent company blog post that detailed the rise in shopping-related phishing emails as the holidays approach. “There’s no shortage of fake deals and promotions for keen shoppers to fall for.”
Bitdefender found that holiday-shopping phishing emails predominantly targeted the United States, and the email messages’ subject lines promised great deals on top-brand sunglasses like Ray-Ban and Oakley as well as Walmart and Amazon exclusives.
Meanwhile, Kaspersky saw shopping-related phishing emails more than double from September to October as the holiday shopping season approached, with Amazon and eBay leading the list of spoofed brands.
The FBI warned recently that hard-to-find gaming consoles, such as the PS5, were being used as lures by online criminals as people try to hunt down PS5 restocks. But people taken in by such scams may find that the promised items never arrive, that their credit-card numbers get used by crooks, or that their personal information ends up being stolen.
“Victims may receive nothing except a compromised identity or fraudulent card charges,” said the…