The Better Business Bureau’s tips for avoiding online shopping scams this summer
RALEIGH, North Carolina – Whether it’s new school supplies, furniture for the home, or clothing for the holidays, expenses are high during the summer months. As online shopping is increasingly used by consumers, BBB serves eastern North Carolina (BBB) warns consumers against online shopping scams. So far in 2022, 44 people have lost nearly $14,000 in BBB’s 33-county service area to online shopping scams.
By 2023, approximately 300 million Americans are expected to shop online, more than 90% of the country’s population. Although buying online is convenient, it can also be risky. It is important to be extra vigilant when researching products online to protect your money.
BBB offers the following tips to avoid fraud when shopping online:
You can find a company’s assessment and accreditation status at BBB.org
· Do an Internet search with the name of the company and the word “scam” to see if there are any other complaints about the company.
· Scammers will post fake positive reviews on their site to lure customers. Bad reviews are more likely to be real, so check them out first. A trusted place to see legitimate reviews is at BBB.org.
- Keep track of what you order
· When you order something, keep track of the site where you bought it. Take a screenshot of ordered items and save emails with receipts and order confirmations.
- Pay with credit card or PayPal.
· These options offer better protection against fraud.
Report online shopping scams:
- File a complaint with BBB or report a scam on the Scam Tracker.
- File a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission on their site or by calling 877-FTC-Help.
- Report policy violations or suspicious activity on social media platforms to these sites, such as Facebook Where instagram.
- Report suspicious activity on Amazon.
- Report scams on Google.
- If you used PayPal, call (888) 221-1161 to speak with a live person instead of using their automated system if you receive an item that is not as advertised.
- If you used a credit card, call the phone number on the back of your card to report fraud and request your money.
For more information you can trust, visit BBB.org.