HELENA – Falling victim to scams online is more likely than it has ever been, especially during the busiest online shopping day of the year, so finding ways to stay safe on this Cyber Monday is key for online shoppers.
If you are one of the millions of people who will be online shopping, it's important to keep in mind that so will scammers. According to the Federal Trade Commission, over $1.4 billion were lost last year due to fraud, that is up by 38% from the previous year.
Finding the best deals this holiday season is crucial for not breaking your bank. But when you're scrolling through sites and come across a deal you haven’t seen before make sure to think twice before you click. Without paying close attention you can easily find yourself being out thousands of dollars.
“The bad guys are going to send you coupons or things like that, that look like great savings but they're not,” says Sheriff Leo Dutton. “They're an attempt for you to click on those and then they get your personal information.”
Here are some other things to keep in mind, make sure to shop on a trusted site. Do not go to sites that are unfamiliar to you because it is most likely a scam. Making sure you are on secure Wi-Fi so people can't hack into your system. Having some sort of fire wall protection can also help detect if you are on a secure site or not. You can also purchase a gift card or credit card to enter in if you do not feel comfortable putting in your own card information. Lastly, monitoring your debit or credit card to see if there are any unknown or unauthorized transactions.
If you do happen to fall into a scam, the sooner you report it, the more likely you are to retrieve some of your money back if not all of it. You can click here for more information on staying safe when online shopping.