Columbia, SC (WLTX) - 'Tis the season to be jolly, but it is also the season for holiday scams. The FBI is warning shoppers to beware of four scams to avoid becoming a victim of fraud.
In no particular order, the first is online shopping scams. We have all heard the line: if it looks too good to be true, it probably is. Steer clear of unfamiliar sites offering crazy discounts or lower priced brand name items. Additionally, do not open any emails or click on any links from sites you did not sign up for.
The second is social media scams. Some sites may offer vouchers or gift cards or pose as holiday promotions leading to online surveys. Those could be a way to steal personal information.
That goes the same for the third, smartphone app scams. These could be disguised as games and offered for free, but designed to steal personal information. The FBI suggests looking for third party reviews before downloading anything.
The fourth are the work-from-home scams. These are scams offering a way to earn extra money from the comforts of home. The FBI says these may have an ulterior motive as well, and suggests that you do your research before signing up and giving any information.
A good way to make sure you have not been victim of a scam is to monitor your bank accounts, especially after making online purchases and in the weeks following the holiday season.
If you suspect you have been a victim of fraud, you should immediately contact your bank and then your local law enforcement.