Pick Your Community: | Hopkins | Muhlenberg | Daviess | Christian | Henderson | Lakes | McCracken | Webster
Davis Motor Sales banner ad

Be Wary Of Seasonal Scam

text scamMUHLENBERG COUNTY, KY (12/3/12) – With the holiday shopping season underway, Attorney General Jack Conway urges Kentucky consumers to be wary of seasonal scams and identity theft. A record number of consumers are turning to their smart phones, tablets and computers for their holiday shopping needs, which has scammers working overtime to develop fraudulent emails and text messages to gain access to your personal information and your identity.
 
"Shoppers should be leery of text messages or pop-up ads offering products such as iPads or gift cards for free or at heavily discounted rates," General Conway said. "These offers, or phishing scams, can contain a potential virus or malware that detects personal information such as usernames, passwords or even credit card details. Remember, if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."
 
General Conway's Office of Consumer Protection has seen an increase in complaints related to fraudulent text messages. Some appear to come from a reputable store, while others involve sweepstakes. The text messages may indicate that consumers have won a sweepstakes or a shopping spree for purchases in a particular store. They are asked to call a number for details or respond to the text. Consumers should not respond, as it only confirms for the scammer that the cell phone numbers are valid and they may attempt to use enticements to obtain personal information from the consumer.
 
Additionally, consumers need to be careful of malicious mobile apps designed to steal information from smartphones or distribute expensive text messages without a user's consent. Malicious apps are usually offered for free and involve some type of fun application or game.

Beware of Seasonal Phishing Scams
 
Seasonal phishing scams often come disguised as requests for charitable contributions, electronic greeting cards, online shopping advertisements or credit card applications. More sophisticated scammers have even mimicked an electronic shipping update notice from companies like UPS or Amazon.com.
 
"These fraudulent emails can contain viruses or direct consumers to legitimate-looking websites where they are asked to provide personal and financial information to scam artists," General Conway said. "Consumers who fall victim to phishing or malware scams risk having their finances compromised, identities stolen and jeopardized safety."
 
Only do business with companies you know and trust and that offer secure payment processing. Look for websites that start with https, (the "s" stands for secure).
 
To protect yourself against these seasonal phishing scams, verify the communication by calling the company or by logging into your account directly from the business' website.
 
Never do business with someone who insists that you wire money.
 
Using credit cards while shopping online can offer extra protection. Consider designating one credit card with a lower credit limit for online purchases.
 
Keep personal information private. Don't disclose your address, phone number, Social Security number or bank account information to a stranger.
 
Never respond to emails or pop-up ads that ask for your personal or financial information.
 
Avoid storing credit card information online.
 
When buying a gift card, only buy from reputable sources that you know and trust. It is also wise to give the recipient the terms and conditions point of sale material, as well as the receipt confirming the amount purchased on the card. Additionally, consumers should avoid buying gift cards from online auction or "for sale" listing sites, as they can be counterfeit.
 
If you are the victim of a consumer scam, help is available by contacting the Office of the Attorney General's Consumer Protection Hotline at 1-888-432-9257 or by visiting ag.ky.gov/civil/consumerprotection. An identity theft packet is also available.
 
You can follow Attorney General Conway on Twitter @kyoag, visit the Attorney General's Facebook page or view videos on our YouTube channel.
 
SurfKY News
Information provided by the office of Attorney General

© Copyright 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, or rewritten without permission. SurfKY News encourages you to share this story by using one of the social media links below.

button coupons
button classifieds

In Other News...

Concession Stand Hours at Smothers Park over Christmas Break

OWENSBORO, Ky. (12/19/14) — Smothers Park is the perfect place to bring your family and friends to have fun and enjoy a… Read More

Happenings and Meetings - Hopkins County

HOPKINS COUNTY, Ky. (12/20/14) — The following meetings and events are scheduled for the following week: Poppy and… Read More

Most Read This Week

December 16, 2014 10252

Coal Miner Fatally Injured in Underground Mining…

in Top News For All Sites by Dick Brown
December 14, 2014 8932

Muhlenberg Pays Homage to U.S. Armed Forces

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
December 17, 2014 7208

Elderly Couple Found Shot to Death in Muhlenberg

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Trooper Stu Recke
December 17, 2014 6620

Three Men Charged with Burglary

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police Department
December 15, 2014 4967

Hopkins County Woman Charged Second Time in Two…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
December 15, 2014 4406

Woman Leads Police on High-Speed Chase in Stolen…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Madisonville Police
December 18, 2014 3871

Cat Scratching over Dog Ownership Escalates

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Amber Averitt, SurfKY News
December 19, 2014 3554

Dawson Springs Man Charged with Sexual Abuse of…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Detective Sean McCance
December 16, 2014 3531

Highway Crews Pre-Treating Roadways for Potential…

in Hopkins News by Keith Todd
December 16, 2014 3504

KFWC Proposes 2015-2016 Deer Season Dates and…

in General News For All Sites by Department of Fish and Wildlife

Stories Trending Today

December 19, 2014 3554

Dawson Springs Man Charged with Sexual Abuse of…

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Detective Sean McCance
December 19, 2014 3366

Woman Flown to St. Mary's after Two-Car Collision

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Trooper Stu Recke
December 19, 2014 3231

Armstrong Mine to Layoff 39 by End of Day

in Top News For All Sites by Rita Dukes Smith, SurfKY News Director
December 19, 2014 2886

Vehicle Explodes into Flames on Pride Avenue

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Gwen Smith
December 19, 2014 2474

Vehicle Fire Causes Traffic Back-Up on Pennyrile

in Local (Hopkins) Top News by Doreen Dennis
December 19, 2014 1450

Muhlenberg District Court Fines Handed Down

in Local (Muhlenberg) Top News by Charles W. Riley II, SurfKY News
December 19, 2014 1317

Madisonville Police Arrest Reports - Dec. 19, 2014

in Hopkins News by Madisonville Police Department
December 19, 2014 1212

Hopkins County Sheriff's Reports Released

in Hopkins News by Sheila Hopper
December 19, 2014 1052

KSP Post 2 Trooper Honored for DUI Enforcement…

in Top News For All Sites Touching Hopkins by Trooper S. C. Recke
December 19, 2014 890

Pennyrile Narcotics Task Force Obtains Multiple…

in Local (Hopkinsville) Top News by Lori Blakeley

SurfKY News Group, Inc.
Corporate Office & Studio
1125 Nebo Rd.  •  Madisonville, KY 42431
270.452.2727 (phone)
  •  270.452.2249 (fax)


Contact a member of our staff: www.surfky.com/contact
Copyright © 2014 SurfKY News Group, Inc.  •  Terms of Use  •  Site Map

social fbsocial twsocial yt
social gpsocial flrsocial rss