Scams at a Glance: Gift Card Grifters
Dec 7, 2022
TALLAHASSEE, Fla.—Attorney General Ashley Moody is releasing a new Scams at a Glance resource to help Floridians spot and avoid gift card scams. As holiday shoppers search for the perfect present, gift cards are often a popular option. One study suggests that consumers plan to spend nearly half of holiday budgets on these items. However, the Federal Trade Commission reports that gift card scams account for more than a quarter of the cases the agency investigates. Attorney General Moody is releasing Scams at a Glance: Gift Card Grifters to help consumers avoid falling for scammers’ tricks during the holiday season.
Attorney General Ashley Moody said, “Gift cards are the most common present given during the holiday season, so it is no surprise scammers devise schemes in an attempt to exploit these popular gifts. Before you buy or use a gift card, check out our new Scams at a Glance resource to be better prepared to spot and avoid these schemes.”
Scams at a Glance: Gift Card Grifters outlines three common gift card-related schemes:
- Payment schemes: An unsolicited caller purporting to be a government agency, tech-support company or other entity demands payment with gift cards;
- Fake cards: Fraudsters may create fake websites and advertise fake gift cards for popular retailers at steep discounts to steal victims’ financial information; and
- Compromised Cards: Thieves may record numbers and PINs of gift cards in stores, so when a victim purchases the card, the scammer can access the money.
Tips highlighted in the resource for Floridians to avoid falling for scammers’ tricks include:
- Know that no legitimate company or government agency will require payment with gift cards. If someone requests payment via gift card, it is a scam;
- Never send gift cards to unknown individuals;
- Do not share gift card numbers and PINs;
- Purchase gift cards directly from the merchant, don’t use little-known, third-party sites; and
- Inspect cards before buying in-person—look carefully at the packaging for any tears, wrinkles, or other indications of tampering.
To download Scams at a Glance: Gift Card Grifters in English, click here.
To download Scams at a Glance: Gift Card Grifters in Spanish, click here.
Consumers can report gift card fraud to the Federal Trade Commission at ReportFraud.FTC.gov.
Floridians can file a complaint with Attorney General Moody’s office by calling 1(866) 9NO-SCAM or visiting MyFloridaLegal.com.