Better Business Bureau: Buyer beware this Cyber Monday
TRI-CITIES, Wash. — According to the National Retail Federation's annual Holiday Consumer Survey, Cyber Monday looks to be the second-busiest shopping day of the year with more than 78 million shoppers nationwide.
Better Business Bureau Washington Marketplace Director Kirstin Davis told Action News con artists are at their best this time of year, and they're counting on you to slip up,
"Scammers are going to take advantage that people aren't going to stop and take a second look or do that extra step of research."
She said you need to make sure whatever website you're shopping on is safe.
The URL should have an "s" after the http.
This means they've done what they need to keep your information secure,
"That's really, really important."
Next she said to watch for look-alike websites,
"Those are hard to spot this time of year because everyone's trying to put deals out there that sound too good to be true."
An easy way to avoid fakes is going directly to the store's official website.
She also said to avoid links with shortcuts to sales on social media or in emails, and against downloading the retailers app from social media,
"Go to that retailers website and download the app directly from their website."
She said problems with folks clicking over to "Official NFL Seahawks dot com" have cropped up in recent years, and taking an extra second to search for the actual "Official NFL" team would have prevented a lot of headaches,
"It was a beautiful site that looked very legitimate but the jerseys were $40, and in real life its really hard to find one for under $100."
Anothing thing Davis said to watch out for is pop-up ads.
If a tempting one appears on your screen, hover over it with your cursor to see where it's taking you.
If the domain doesn't match the website it claims to be, don't click on it,
"Some of them are legitimate, but you just want to take that extra step to ... see where it's taking you."
Last, Davis said folks need to beware public Wi-Fi connections which offer no guarantee of protection.
She said not to risk it, going so far as to advise against looking at bank balances when logged into one.
Davis said taking some extra precaution while holiday shopping can make a big difference in keeping you joyful of the season.