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Online Shopping Steals
/ Categories: Scam Watch

Online Shopping Steals

It is Thanksgiving week in the United States, which in turn, means Black Friday and Cyber Monday are finally here. Cybercriminals have wasted no time in creating record numbers of fake, malicious online stores to try and trick unsuspecting shoppers.

These stores are created and will claim to sell items that you cannot find in other stores because they are sold out. Items such as the year’s hottest toys or trending makeup are prime examples. To pull you in, cybercriminals run ads on other websites, social media platforms, and even within Google search results. If you click (always think before you click) one of these ads, you’ll be taken to the malicious online store. These stores are created to look as real and legitimate as any other, they will include real product images, descriptions and reviews, an online shopping cart and checkout process! Unfortunately, if you try and purchase something from one of these fake stores, your money, mailing address, payment data, and any other personal information goes directly to the cybercriminals. 

Here are some tips to avoid these malicious online stores:
-Be on the lookout for misspelled or look-alike domains. For example, cybercriminals may spoof the popular toy brand “Squishmallows” with spellings such as “Squishmellows” or “Squashmallows”.
-Be cautious of stores that promise insane deals on high-demand products. If something seems too good to be true, it most likely is.
-Always shop from well-known and trusted retailers. Look up reviews and customer feedback for retailers that you have not utilized before.

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