How to avoid Christmas shopping scams

by | 18 December 2022 | Citizens Advice, Sherwood

Scammers’ tactics are becoming more sophisticated, making scams tricky to recognise. But there are things you can look out for.

Seems too good to be true? It probably is. Like concert tickets that are much cheaper than they’re being sold elsewhere. Be wary of people contacting you out of the blue on social media, via text and email offering items for sale or deals.

Buying from a website you haven’t used before? Do some research. Find a website’s terms and conditions. Look up the company’s address, normally found in the website’s ‘contact us’ section – it should have a street name, not just a post office box. If it’s a registered UK company check its details on the Companies House website. Check what people have said about the company, but don’t rely on reviews on the company’s own website, look at different review websites.

Scammers often ask for payment in an unusual way, or very quickly. For example, asking you to send money through a transfer service like MoneyGram.

To find out about scams sign-up to the Trading Standards email alert on their website. If you’ve been scammed, report it to organisations such as Action Fraud. If you’ve transferred money in the last 24 hours, tell your bank and the police. Don’t feel embarrassed about reporting a scam – scammers are clever and it can happen to anyone.
Get information and advice from Citizens Advice Sherwood and Newark:

  • Local office
    Monday and Wednesday, 9.30am to 2.30pm – 5 Forest Court, NG22 9PL
  • Phone
    01623 861769 (you may be offered a call-back)