With so much talk about Black Friday this year, it’s easy to forget that Cyber Monday is just around the corner!
Though most retailers have also moved their Black Friday deals online because of COVID-19, Cyber Monday is a great way to save money on Christmas gifts (or a gift for yourself). In fact, while Black Friday is a great opportunity to save big on electronics, kitchen appliances, and home items, Cyber Monday is a chance to save on smaller items.
However, it is becoming increasingly more and more important to be aware of online shopping scams. Too many people fall for deals that aren’t real and end up losing money in the process.
According to the Better Business Bureau (BBB), there have been more than 53,000 complaints logged in 2020 so far. Online purchase scams have also spiked, especially since more and more people are turning to e-commerce due to the pandemic.
“Shopping online may save time and money, but this year it also could save lives during this COVID-19 holiday season,” said Stephanie Garland, BBB Springfield Regional Director, in a report.
“BBB reminds shoppers to be careful when shopping online. Fraudsters can separate shoppers from their money or steal their personal information. Some companies may not be able to deliver gifts in time for the holidays.”
If you’re looking to shop for Cyber Monday sales this year, here are some tips to follow so you stay safe and protect your information.
Just because you see a deal on Instagram, Twitter, or Facebook does not mean it’s real. Countless social media accounts have led people to false deals that don’t actually exist. If you do find a great deal on social media, make sure it’s posted by a verified account and do your research to ensure the company is legit.
Listen to your gut. If a deal sounds way too good to be true, it more than likely is. Just like social media accounts, research any website you visit before making a purchase. If you are unable to find any legitimate information about the company, it probably isn’t real.
Be very wary if a site asks you to pay using a gift card. Be smart and only use a credit card to make online purchases.
Before purchasing anything, make sure you know exactly when your item is expected to be delivered and what the return policy is. You don’t want to get stuck with an item you won’t be able to return or realize after the fact that your gift won’t arrive until after Christmas.