Fox 40 News Investigates: Watch out for the Holiday Hu$tle - MSNewsNow.com - Jackson, MS

Fox 40 News Investigates: Watch out for the Holiday Hu$tle

Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
Source: WLBT Source: WLBT
JACKSON, MS (Mississippi News Now) -

Alison Chaltas is an executive and busy wife and mother. So, when it comes to shopping, she saves time by surfing retail websites. 

"I shop online all the time. I would say at least once a day," she says.  "I do all of my clothing shopping online, all my gift shopping online." 

If you like to shop from your kitchen, it will come as no surprise that e-commerce keeps growing as a percentage of overall retail sales.  But, experts say scammers make it their full-time job to catch you off guard. 

Sorin Mihailovici, the founder of Scam Detector, says criminals are now taking existing scams and making them harder to detect, like fake puppy postings, or links promising 'must-have' items for prices well below market value. We're warned to be especially careful of links for too-good-to-be-true deals on social media.

What scammers do, they go on social media platforms. They advertise great products that are real products only cheaper, and they would send (the shoppers) to their own duplicate sites," said Mihailovici.   

The key tip while shopping is this simple: look at the URL. Make sure it says https, not just http. The s stands for secure. 

"So, if they don't have that, if the duplicate site doesn't have the https and it only has http, you can rest assured that that's a scam," he added. 

Also, look at a shopping site's reviews before buying, but do not depend on testimonials on the site itself.  

Chaltas says she always does her homework before buying. 

"I also kind of count on my credit card provider to be an extra level of security," she tells us.  

Mihailovici also warns that the iTunes gift cards scam is popping up again. If you get an email with a receipt for a gift card you never sent, and it gives you a link to cancel, do not click on that. And, never do any shopping on public wi-fi.

For more tips on staying safe this online shopping season, click here

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