It is Christmas time this year once again and so is the time for online Christmas scams. Christmas has become equivalent with partying all over the world. Even non-Christian people also join their Christian brethren celebrating both Christmas and the New Year. And with these celebrations, the scams too make their presence felt.
These days the atmosphere is heating up for the two prominent reasons – the X-Mas and the New Year celebrations. Times are pleasant and happier for all over the place in the world. However, the pleasantry time has a cruel brother accompanying it – the scams and rumors. Well, scams are certainly more dangerous than just rumors and even the rumormongers take advantage of the online Christmas scams.
Here, we have a look at the top five online Christmas scams:
Christmas and New Year is a holiday time for many people and so is the time for online Christmas scams as well. People are just looking for freebies and giveaways during these days. So, it is easy for scammers to take advantage of these days and sneak in with vindictive ideas. Apart from emails, people also get phone calls regarding such malicious holiday deals.
- If at all you have to travel, book your holiday in advance not giving any chance to online Christmas scams. Booking at the eleventh hour isn’t wisdom.
- There are loads of touring companies and almost all of them have official web sites. Just check over there about the authenticity of the offers.
- Last but not the least, don’t give any of your personal details regarding the ‘cheap offers’ you are offered.
It is ripe time for phishing and you are more likely to receive emails from sources that are unknown to you. You are welcomed by a message in the subject line with lucrative ‘offers’ regarding Christmas. Some mails also ‘enlighten’ you that you have won a Christmas gift. It is very likely that out of excitement and enthusiasm, you may click the mail and be a victim of online Christmas scams.
- First things first – never open mails that are from unknown sources.
- Be practical. Nothing’s ‘free’ these days. If you think it is, it can be at a ‘cost’ of your sensitive information and data.
- Be a Good Samaritan and report such mails as spam and phishing. Also don’t forget to trash them forthwith.
Other of the online Christmas scams includes fake tickets. By the way, who does not love to have a pass or a ticket to your favorite event? These days – during Christmas and in the run up to the New Year, musical shows are arranged in a big number. So, more often than not, through online Christmas scams you are likely to get ‘free’ tickets for such shows.
- Does it need a second mention that you should visit the official web site of such an event management company? Purchasing tickets from such an official portal is the safest way out.
- Another common activity many people do is to Google such an event. You are more likely to get a concrete info if there is indeed any such event organized.
- Avoid buying tickets without crosschecking the authenticity of the organizers and the email sender.
Some of the most prominent online Christmas scams take place through social media. If the social media provides you with news stories about developments around the world, it is also a source of headaches. Some of the prominent social networking sites are bombarded with posts about free Christmas cards, free Christmas gifts, etc.
- The safest way out is to avoid clicking on any such link or visit any web site if recommended in such a post.
- Many people also take advantage of such merry-making days asking people to donate to charity. Watch out.
- Something like “shocking video posts” is a common message these days and are more likely to be malicious links than not – another well-known online Christmas scams.
For online Christmas scams and scammers, they target people for whom Christmas is a weak point. That’s why Christmas is a bait for them. One thing is certain that the emotional quotient comes into play. The fraudsters target the emotions and personal feelings through claims of being huge charity organizations.
- Is the Christmas time the only time for charity? Can charity be done only when you are called out for? There are other times in the year for charity too.
- If at all you have to do charity during these days, do it for organizations and/or NGOs that you are personally aware of.
- Do a bit of research of the organization you want to do charity for if that institute isn’t known to you. Ask family and friends.
Online shopping scams, Christmas E-card scams, video scams… well, the list of online Christmas scams is just endless. The scams also bring under the scanner the reputed companies who do honest business. So, it is but natural to raise question marks over such offers during these days. We aren’t saying all and everything is scam. But, having a second opinion isn’t a bad idea either.