Black Friday Online Scams to Watch For

Black Friday

Tomorrow is Black Friday and Monday is Cyber Monday – which means deals, deals, deals on lots of sought-after items in stores and online. For most consumers, Black Friday is a great opportunity to get some great deals on holiday gifts and treats for yourself.

That said, it’s important to be careful when shopping for Black Friday deals, as there are some known scams that innocent shoppings could potentially fall for.

The Competition Bureau has issued a warning to bargain hunters to be care not to fall for an online scam known as the “Cancelled Discount.”

Cancelled Discount Scam

This is how the Cancelled Discount scam works. First, the online business posts an ad online pushing its sale. Consumers then click the ad, see the product or products on sale for an amazing price. The online shopper buys the item with the discount applied. They are then contacted by the online retailer who inform them that the item cannot be sold for that discount after all, and cancels the order. The item is however, still available to buy – only for a much higher price.

The Competition Bureau warns that this is a bait-and-switch tactic used to trick consumers into buying more expensive items than they intended. After all, they were lured in by the ad promising Black Friday discounts. Consumers might not have even gone to that particular online retailer if not for the attractive advertisement.

Anyone who’s fallen for a “Cancelled Discount” scam should keep receipts and emails regarding to original purchase and the cancellation. This can be provided to he bureau to aid in their investigation.

You should also keep an eye on credit card statements and report any surprise changes applied after the order is cancelled.

Other Tips

To ensure you’re getting the best experience possible when shopping online for deals, try to do the following:

  1. Shop at well-known shops, possibly retailers that also have brick and mortar locations as well.
  2. Look for secure online check-outs. What kinds of information are they asking for and is it protected?
  3. Know and understand the company’s return policy. It should be located somewhere on the business’s website.
  4. Look at the product specifications. Is it as advertised? Does the description match the photo? Is it a brand name or knock-off?
  5. If it looks too good to be true, it probably is.

Stay safe online and have a successful day of shopping!

If you have any questions about online security or common scams, contact TwinBytes today for advice.

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