Buyers should be aware of bogus websites and fraudsters when shopping online this Black Friday, a Fine Gael TD has said
Dublin Mid-West Deputy, Emer Higgins, has called on the public to be aware of fraudsters and bogus websites when shopping this Black Friday in order to protect their finances and personal information.
Deputy Higgins said: “Instances of online and credit card fraud have risen during the pandemic and this Black Friday, fraudsters will be out to trick people into bogus deals in any way that they can.
“€22 million was lost to online fraud last year and we saw a 50% increase in fraud leading up to and over the Christmas period.
“People are bombarded with deals and sales around Black Friday and it can be quite overwhelming, so it’s vital that people are not caught out by fraud and know the proper steps to take to protect their finances and personal details online.
“For example, a mistake people often fall for is assuming that if a website is ‘.ie’ it is safe but that is not necessarily the case.
“As a first port of call, always ensure that you’re using a secure website that displays the padlock symbol and has ‘https’ at the start of the web address.
“The importance of a secure payment method also cannot be understated and you should always try to use a secure payment option such as PayPal, Apple Pay, Google Pay, Stripe etc. as opposed to transferring money directly to a third party which should always be avoided,” added Deputy Higgins.
“It’s also important to check that any emails or texts you receive about Black Friday Deals are coming from a reputable source, and if you’re unsure then go straight to the brand’s website or call them directly to check.
“If a Black Friday Deal feels too good to be true, it probably is, so trust your instincts and if you think it might be a scam, then think twice about buying,” Deputy Higgins concluded.