December 26, 2018
John Vomhof Jr.Staff Writer
Everyone loves gift cards — even scammers.
That’s why Best Buy is teaming with AARP and the National Association of Attorneys General (NAAG) to launch a campaign aimed at raising public awareness around gift card fraud.
As gift cards have gained popularity in recent years, there’s also been a rise in criminals trying to trick consumers out of their money. These scams are always evolving, but a common version asks victims to use gift cards to pay legal fees, bail, taxes or other “urgent” expenses. It often targets older Americans.
“We’ve taken steps to warn customers in our stores about potential gift card fraud, and now we want to help generate even more consumer awareness,” said Todd Hartman, Best Buy’s chief risk and compliance officer. “We need to spread the word to stop the scam.”
Fraud prevention tips
Here are some tips to prevent gift card fraud:
- If you receive a call or email asking for payment by gift card, know that it’s a scam. Report it to your local authorities and the Federal Trade Commission right away.
- Never provide your gift card number and pin to anyone you don’t know. Once those numbers are gone, so is your money.
- Limit sharing your personal information. Be thoughtful when you get email or phone requests for this information.
- If you’re pressured to act quickly, odds are it’s a scam.
- Don’t open email attachments or click on links unless you’re certain they’re from legitimate sources. Search business records and reviews online to check them out.
For more information and resources regarding gift card scams, please visit BestBuy.com.