Beware of online holiday scams

When Kim Russo walks her dogs she usually brings along her favorite insulated cup. She wanted to give some as gifts and after seeing a deal for them on a Facebook ad in August ordered 9 of them. The cost?

Around 140 dollars. So far, no cups.

"I feel dumb. (laugh) I definitely feel dumb for sure that I. You know, it's too good to be true," said Russo.

Consumer Reports says if you have never heard of the site, do some research before you buy.

Consumer Reports Money Editor Octavio Blanco said, "A good place to start is the Better Business Bureau where you can note any complaints. The BBB also says use extreme caution when ordering from a company whose existence can't be verified, as may have been the case with Kim."

Russo said, "There is no way to get in touch with them, there's no phone number, no mailing address."

Another good source of information: online user reviews.

Type the name of the company and keywords 'review' and 'complaint.' This sports gear company, for instance, has several customers who claim they received knock-offs.

"Also be careful when making purchases on Craigslist or other virtual bulletin boards. The key to trust here is buy local," said Blanco.

Craigslist advises never sending money to someone you have not met and arrange any meetings in a public place. For instance, in some towns, the police designate a safe zone for such transactions.

Another scam can come in an email, that looks like it is from a delivery service like Fed-Ex or the post office.

It states you have a package and asks for personal information to enable delivery.

Do not give it.

Legitimate delivery companies do not ask for this type of information and the post office will usually attempt delivery in person.
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