Have your wits about you.
As Christmas shopping gets underway in earnest, An Garda Síochana has warned those doing their shopping online to be wary of possible scammers.
The Europol eCommerce Action campaign has been launched ahead of the upcoming Black Friday sales, with more and more retailers and consumers taking their business online.
The campaign says “whilst convenient for both the consumer and retailer it also presents opportunities for fraudsters who can use the anonymous nature of the internet to rip off consumers or target retailers who do not have the necessary defences in place to protect themselves.”
The Gardaí and Europol have issued the following advice in order to help shopper stay safe while making purchases online.
- Check to ensure the website is genuine – type the address yourself and check the spelling
- Check the seller’s reviews and ratings
- Be careful how you pay – always use the websites recommended payment site – if none, use credit cards when purchasing as most cards have strong customer protection policy
- Save all documents related to online purchases
- If you don’t make a purchase, don’t leave identity or card details behind
- Never send card details by email, text or other messaging methods
- Don’t send money to someone you don’t know – check first
Detective Chief Superintendent Pat Lordan of the Garda National Economic Crime Bureau said: “I certainly welcome this Europol initiative and would urge consumers and businesses to be extra careful when conducting online transactions and pay heed to the valuable advices offered on the Europol website to help avoid the many pitfalls involved.”