Scambook Warns of 4th of July Scams: Patriotic Phishing and Un-American Sales

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With 4th of July around the corner, scammers will be trying to use consumers' patriotism against them. Holiday phishing scams, deceptive sales, and counterfeit tickets to fireworks shows are among the list of scams that may affect individuals.

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As with any holiday, scammers exploit the spirit of the celebration to cloud consumers’ judgment. Individuals need to be aware of holiday-themed phishing scams and 4th of July sales that seem too good to be true.

With 4th of July around the corner, scammers will be trying to use consumers' patriotism against them. Holiday phishing scams, deceptive sales, and counterfeit tickets to fireworks shows are among the list of scams that may affect individuals.

“As with any holiday, scammers exploit the spirit of the celebration to cloud consumers’ judgment,” says Kase Chong, Scambook’s Director of Marketing. “Individuals need to be aware of holiday-themed phishing scams and 4th of July sales that seem too good to be true.”

Scambook took a look at three 4th of July scams in particular to break down the underlying scam and ways consumers can protect themselves:

1.    Phishing: Patriotic eCards and Social Media Messages May Carry Viruses

Scammers capitalize on eCards, social media, and other sharable content to infect consumers' computers with Trojan viruses and other dangerous malware. These viruses can steal personal and financial information for identity theft, drain the victim's bank accounts or hijack their social media accounts.

Although posing a serious threat, individuals can protect themselves against phishing scams and electronic fraud by following basic Internet safety rules such as keeping antivirus software on and up-to-date, using a secure web browser, and never opening unexpected attachments.

Links in suspicious emails shouldn’t be clicked and “software updates” or “video player updates” be never downloaded from a social media message.

2.    Deceptive Deals: 4th of July Sales Using Shady Tactics

Scammers prey on the psychological qualities that make consumers vulnerable to impulse shopping and excessive spending. “Act now or miss out” sales during 4th of July weekend may cause many individuals to purchase without reading the fine print, making them unaware of contract fees and final-sale restrictions.

Many fake retailers also create online websites that offer incredible holiday savings on electronics and other goods, while proving to be a trap for stealing credit card information.

Scambook advises purchasing a prepaid credit card before attending 4th of July sales, forcing consumers to stick to budget while carefully thinking about purchases and not giving in to time-sensitive sales.

It’s also important to read the fine print for any large items with financing options or monthly subscription services. Online websites should also be checked for legitimacy on Scambook.com and online customer reviews.

3.    Fizzled Fireworks: Counterfeit Tickets to Special Shows and Events

Many communities organize special fireworks shows for the 4th of July. Once tickets run out, con artists attempt to sell counterfeit tickets on Craigslist or at the venue itself.

Dealing in cash, money orders, or wire transfers, there is no recourse for getting money back from scammers in return for missing the show.

Therefore, fireworks show tickets should not be purchased from unknown individuals, especially if they ask for a Western Union or MoneyGram wire transfer. Nonlocal sellers as well as resold electronic tickets are other red flags to be aware of.

All 4th of July scams should be shared with friends, family, and reported to Scambook.com in order to further help others be prepared and protected.

ABOUT SCAMBOOK
Scambook is an online complaint resolution platform dedicated to obtaining justice for victims of fraud with unprecedented speed and accuracy. By building communities and providing resources on the latest scams, Scambook arms consumers with the up-to-date information they need to stay on top of emerging schemes. Since its inception, Scambook has resolved over $10 million in reported consumer damages. For more information, visit scambook.com.

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Judy Dixon
PMBC Group
(310) 777-7546
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