With the rise of e-commerce and online shopping, consumers have access to a wider range of products and services than ever before. However, this convenience comes with a downside – the risk of falling prey to online scammers. These scammers are constantly coming up with new and creative ways to trick unsuspecting shoppers. We’ll take a closer look at some of the most common online shopping scams and how you can protect yourself from them.
3 Common Online Shopping Scams
1. Order Confirmation Scams
This scam involves a nefarious party sending a fake order confirmation email to an individual, usually with a link or attachment that the user is instructed to click or download. Once these links are clicked on or an attachment is downloaded, they are directed to a fake website where they are prompted to enter their personal and financial information.
To avoid falling victim to scams such as this, always double-check the sender of any email claiming to be from an online retailer. If the email address looks suspicious, don’t click on any links or download any attachments. Instead, go directly to the retailer’s website and check your order status there. Additionally, always make sure you’re shopping on a secure website by checking for the padlock icon in the browser address bar and ensuring that the website address starts with “https://”.
2. Tech Support Scams
In this scam, a fraudster poses as a representative from a well-known technology retailer company, such as Microsoft, Apple, or Samsung, and contacts an individual claiming that there is a problem with their device. The fraudster then instructs the user to download and install remote access software, which allows them to take control of the users computer and steal their personal and financial information.
To protect yourself from tech support scams, never give control of your computer or device to someone you don’t know and trust. If you receive an unsolicited call or email claiming to be from a tech company, hang up or delete the email and contact the company directly to verify the legitimacy of the claim. Additionally, always keep your anti-virus and anti-malware software up to date.
3. Shipment Notification Scams
Ever received a shipping notification to your phone or emails, but you aren’t expecting a parcel from that vendor? Shipment notification scams involves a nefarious party sending a fake shipment notification email of text message to a shopper. The email usually contains a link or attachment, with a request to click or download to track their shipment. However, once the shopper clicks on the link or downloads the attachment, they are directed to a fake website that may ask for personal details, of the link/document may install a virus onto their device.
To avoid falling victim to this type of scam, always double-check the sender of any email claiming to be from a shipping company or online retailer. If you are receiving the message via phone, check the number is legitimate. Remember to not press on any links or download any files from sources you are unsure of. If you are expecting a delivery, check directly through the website you purchased the goods from, or call the vendor for assistance.
Online Shopping Scams: Are You Aware?
Online shopping scams are a growing problem that can lead to financial loss and identity theft. By staying vigilant and following these tips, you can protect yourself from common online shopping scams and enjoy all the benefits of e-commerce without the risk.
- Always double-check the sender of any email claiming to be from an online retailer or service provider.
- Never give control of your computer or device to someone you don’t know and trust.
- Always make sure you’re shopping on a secure website.