Top Six Holiday Scams To Avoid

Monday, November 24th 2014, 9:31 am
By: News 9

It's the most wonderful time of year, and thieves and scammers are taking advantage of it.

The holidays are a busy time for everybody, even scammers and identity thieves. USA Today has a list of six scams to avoid during the holiday season.

First, make sure gift cards are full when you buy them. Scammers can scan the codes of un-bought gift cards and wait until they're activated, then use them online or make a counterfeit.

Next, puppies are a popular holiday gift. Some scammers will use fake pictures to trick people into paying for an expensive dog that doesn't exist.

Then, there're email phishing scams. A good rule of thumb is to just never click on a link in an email, really, any time of year.

Contest scams happen all year, but they're even more common during the holidays. People are told they won a contest they didn't enter, and are asked to pay taxes and fees to collect the winnings.

The grandparent scam happens a lot over holidays, when college-age children may be traveling. A grandparent gets a call apparently from a grandchild in trouble and needing money.

Also, watch out for vacation home rental scams that ask you to pay with a wire transfer or cashier's check.

We also want to remind you to watch out for people trying to steal your packages that are left on your porch. Some people are just waiting to be a Grinch.