Cyber Monday shoppers be warned. Scammers are waiting to pounce on naive internet shoppers.
According to the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection, cyber thieves target scams based on their knowledge of the hottest gifts on the market, leading to fake contests on social media sites, dangerous links, and texts and emails that could lead to identity theft.
Other recommendations to stay safe include making sure a website is legitimate and secure before ordering, install anti-virus software and a firewall, pay for credit card protection and print records of online transactions.
“When you see a post on someone's wall or a tweet from a colleague, treat it the same as an unsolicited email,” says Chester Wisniewski, an expert with Sophos, on their blog. “Don't click it. Go to the real source and, if necessary, contact the sender to confirm its veracity."
(image)U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal warned of "tricks and traps" some advertisers use to try to lure consumers into making purchases on Cyber Monday.
During a recent news conference highlighting what he calls laughable, ludicrous and deceptive ads, the Connecticut Democrat said that consumers should be on the lookout for scams.
He says scams may include overly broad advertisements, hidden fees when it's time to check out and emailed coupons that hide the fine print in links to other websites.
It is estimated that shoppers will spend $62 billion online this holiday season – up about 15 percent from 2012, says eMarketer, a firm that tracks e-commerce.