Most are legit vendors capitalizing on the holiday cyber shoppers, but some are throwing out bait, hoping to you reel in your bucks with bogus businesses.
So how can you detect an online shopping scam before getting ripped off? Check for red flags like a price that’s too good to be true for hot, hard-to-get holiday items. And if the seller is requesting immediate payment like Venmo, Zelle, money transfer, or money cards.
“I told him, ‘Look I can’t get the sneakers,’ I was ripped off,” said victim Julene Stassou,.
Stassou was the victim of a gift Grinch.
Her son Jake saw some Air Jordans online. They match his team colors and the price was right, less than $80 for the OG high tops which can retail as high as $589 a pair.
“So he sent me a link, I clicked on it, and I ordered them,” Stassou said.
The author and nutritionist used her PayPal account to purchase the shoes the day after Thanksgiving.
“I realized they never came,” Stassou said. “So I logged into PayPal and I went to email the seller and realized I had been blocked by her.”
She said PayPal wouldn’t help.
“You end up buying something that’s not even there,” said Claire Rosenzweig, president of the BBB of Metro New York.
Two-thirds of consumers reporting to Scam Tracker say they were targeted by deceptive ads for a specific product after browsing for it.