AG Moody Releases Online Safety Tips for Cyber Monday
Nov 29, 2021
TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Ashley Moody is urging Floridians participating in Cyber Monday to take steps to protect sensitive information. Cyber Monday is one of the most popular shopping days of the year. Last year’s Cyber Monday produced the single biggest online shopping day in U.S. history, with nearly $11 billion spent—a 15.1% increase from the total revenue of Cyber Monday in 2019. As online commerce increases, so does the risk of scammers trying to take advantage of unsuspecting shoppers. Attorney General Moody is asking Floridians to take steps this Cyber Monday to avoid common types of online fraud.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “We are in the thick of the holiday shopping season, and with Cyber Monday deals enticing millions of people to purchase gifts online, please be cautious before giving away personal or financial information. I am providing some quick tips for Floridians capitalizing on this occasion to purchase presents at a discount.”
Here are some of the most popular online holiday scams with helpful tips on avoiding them:
- Gift Card Scam: A scammer asks a victim to put money on a gift card, such as a Google Play or iTunes card, to pay for a product or service—then send the numbers on the back of the card to the scammer. This is always a scam; no credible business will demand payment via gift card.
- Counterfeit Goods Scam: Counterfeit products often resemble the original product—especially in online photos. However, the fake products are rarely of the same quality and purchasing the product steals money from the designers and innovators who created the original product.
- E-Holiday Card Scam: Emails or text messages of seemingly innocent digital holiday cards could instead be a common greeting card scam. The cards may contain a malicious link used to phish personal and financial information or inject malware onto an electronic device.
- ‘Buy Online, Pick Up’ In Store Scam: Knowing consumers want to bypass shipping fees, scammers create fake BOPIS product sales online. This can lead to the wrong goods being sent, or no goods being sent at all.
Attorney General Moody recommends consumers use the following tips to ensure a safe online shopping experience:
- Double check the legitimacy of an online store by researching the store’s name and the sought-after product;
- Use credit cards, when possible, for better protection from fraud;
- Refrain from clicking on links with deals too good to be true; and
- Avoid using public Wi-Fi when submitting personal or financial information.
Attorney General Moody recently released the 2021 Holiday Consumer Protection Guide, containing further tips for safe online shopping and how to avoid charity-related scams. The guide also contains a list of recalled items to be on the lookout for while holiday shopping this year. To access the guide, click here.
Attorney General Moody’s Scams at a Glance brochures also includes Scams at a Glance: ‘Tis the Season, a brochure full of tips consumers should consider to protect financial and personal information during the holiday season. To view Scams at a Glance: ‘Tis the Season, click here.