BBB warns of pandemic related scams

Michigan

LANSING, Mich. (WLNS) – According to the Better Business Bureau, in 2020 more than 38% of all scam reports were from online purchases, and this year that number is set to grow.

“With the product shortages that are happening and an increase in online shopping due to the pandemic, we are going to see online scams happening this year,” said Casey Lawler, digital marketing specialist with the Better Business Bureau.

Heading into the holiday season experts say this year it’s more important than ever to be on high alert.

“Avoid sketchy sellers. You’re going to find a lot of people online try to go with people that you know that you trust. And you can always check out the website online at bbb.org to see if those people are trustworthy and if they are worth shopping through.”

Typically many assume that scams are targeted at older people, but the Better Business Bureau says that’s not the case.

“In 2020 we found with the pandemic and those going online more ages 18 to 24 ended up becoming the most likely to be a victim of an online purchase scam.”

Experts say items that are hard to find make great gifts and scammers know that.

“With those popular products that are coming through online, we have that shortlist we all want to reach. We want to get those for the ones we love so those are very popular online and scammers are aware of that as well,” said Lawler.

Lawler says at the end of the day, it’s best to go with your gut feeling.

“If the deal looks too good to be true it probably is.”

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