Online shopping scams on the rise; Be careful on Black Friday, police warn
The police noticed a significant increase in reports about online shopping scams compared to 2019. More and more people are falling victim to - sometimes fake - online stores that don't deliver what they promised. With Black Friday happening this week, the police warn bargain hunters to be extra careful, AD reports.
Up to the start of November, the police received 15,732 reports of online shopping fraud this year. In the whole of 2019, there were only about 3,000 cases. The vast majority of reports (8,743) involved online stores that turned out not to exist at all.
According to the police, it is striking that most victims aren't people who rarely shop online but people who do so regularly. "They don't pay close enough attention or are sometimes too trusting, and then things go wrong," Gijs van der Linden of the police's National Hotline Online Fraud said to AD.
The police warn consumers to always be alert and always investigate unknown online stores first, especially over Black Friday. Search for complaints about the store. Check the website address. Check for grammatical errors in the texts or spelling mistakes in product names.
"But the best tip remains: if it seems too good to be true, then it probably is," Van der Linden said.