The stores on Black Friday won't be crowded with just shoppers. Online consumers are being warned to watch out for scam artists. The Scambook, a platform where consumers can try to resolve their complaints, is advising consumers to be on the lookout for these schemes, some of which may be rehashed from last year:
Fake downloadable coupons for, say, Walmart, Target or BestBuy, that really are a phishing expedition to steal your information or install malware on your computer.
A text offering a free $1,000 Best Buy gift card if you enter a code. This was a hot scam last year but might appear this year under Target or Walmart.
Phony videos and eCards that contain computer viruses.
Fake websites that appear as if they belong to a legitimate retailer.
How to avoid scams
Scambook says consumers can protect themselves by:
• Making sure they are on a retailer's true website and not one that pops up only around the holidays.
• When shopping online, create a different password than the usual password you use if you're asked to create an account by a retailer.
• Don't open email attachments from unknown senders.
• Beware of deals that are too good to be true.