This time of year, make sure to be on your toes to avoid being scammed! We've got tips to help you avoid five common scams that pop up around the holidays.
Here’s what to look out for:
Too-Good-to-Be-True Travel Offers
A tropical getaway is always enticing in the middle of winter, and that's exactly what scammers hope will make you take the bait. However, what seems like a dream vacation could end up being a financial nightmare, since you'll end up paying for a trip you can't take.
Cheer-Free Online Offers
Searching for the perfect gift at a great price? Be careful when buying gifts online. Fraudsters are more focused than ever before on online scams since chip technology has made it more difficult for them to use your card at stores.
Not-So-Jolly Job Postings
The ad promises to get you the perfect well-paying job. Who doesn't want that? Phony job postings on social media sites whimsically detail a dream career or advertise temporary holiday jobs so you can earn extra cash. How can you tell the difference between a legitimate job and a phony one? One idea that may help is to remember that legitimate employers won't ask for personal information up-front, ask for money, or pressure you to act quickly before you've even had an interview. You can check out the company with the Better Business Bureau® (BBB) or do an online search. If there isn't much there, you might want to pass.
Coal-Stuffing Prizes and Sweepstakes
"Congratulations! It's your lucky day—you've won a car, cash or some other (incredible prize)," or so the email says. It's most likely you're just one of the many people who received this spam email or saw this pop-up ad that's trying to trick you into handing over personal information or money, in hopes of receiving a reward.
The holiday season is meant for giving, but be sure to validate any charity to which you choose to donate. For help, use services like the Better Business Bureau, Wise Giving Alliance, Charity Navigator® or CharityWatch.