department sale signThe Friday and Monday after Thanksgiving, known as Black Friday and Cyber Monday, are the most popular shopping days of the year. It is not uncommon for people to get caught up in the whirlwind of “deals” and throw caution to the wind, however it is important to be alert and take precautions to make sure that your holidays are not ruined by a scam. Whether you are heading to the mall or purchasing your goods online, The Villages Injury Lawyers at Whittel & Melton want you to be safe and aware of scammers and hackers.

Black Friday Shopping Tips:

  • Research before Buying. If you find a great deal through a store coupon, make sure to bring it to the store with you. Make sure the business you are dealing with is reputable and will honor the sale price they claim to have by checking out Business Reviews on the Better Business Bureau’s website by clicking here.
  • Understand Store Policies. Research store policies on exchanges and returns for Black Friday deals. Many businesses have shorter return deadlines for these items and may include a restocking fee.
  • Get a Gift Receipt. Gift receipts usually include a description of the item purchased without disclosing the price that was paid. If you are giving an item as a gift, make sure to include a gift receipt. Without one, the recipient may not be able to return or exchange the item, or worse, receive an exchange value at a lowered price.

Cyber Monday Shopping Tips:

  • Look for Signs of Security. Before making an online purchase, look for the HTTPS in the URL and the padlock icon in the browser status bar. This will indicate whether or not the page is secure.
  • Use a Secure Payment Method. If it is at all possible, always use a secure payment service such as Pay Pal when shopping online. If the merchant does not accept Pay Pal, then try and designate only one credit or debit card for online purchases. If using a debit card, check your account activity regularly. If someone gets your debit card number they can easily drain your account without even needing a pin number.
  • Be Strict with Passwords. Always use different passwords for every site, and do not let your browsers store this information. Be cautious of any emails that claim to contain shipping confirmation or package alerts that force you to download an attachment. It is best to track packages through the retailer’s website.
  • Beware of Search Engine Optimization Poisoning. Cyber security experts claim this is one of the biggest online problems because scammers can take advantage of popular search terms like “Cyber Monday Deals,” and create false links that come up in the search results. Scammers use these false links to infect computers with malware so that they can gain access to your bank and credit card accounts.

If you have been injured during this Thanksgiving Holiday please don't hesitate to contact a Villages Injury Attorney at Whittel & Melton. We can review your case and help you determine how best to proceed so that you are not made a victim twice. Contact us anytime for a free legal consultation by dialing 352-369-5334.

From our legal team at Whittel & Melton, we wish you and your family a very safe and happy Thanksgiving holiday!