THREE in four people in Ireland say they have been attacked by scammers this year.
The alarming revelation comes as consumers have been warned by card payments company Visa to be wary of Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales.
A survey commissioned by Visa also found that nearly a third of consumers said they had been victims of online fraud in the past.
It’s important people are on their guard, Visa said, with nearly half of consumers here hoping to take advantage of Black Friday and Cyber Monday to save money on holiday gifts.
This is up from last year, although lockdowns have led to a surge in online shopping in 2021.
About two-thirds of respondents said they are more alert to the possibility of being targeted by online scammers during Black Friday and Cyber Monday sales compared to other times of the year.
Visa said, “However, with nearly three-quarters of people saying they have been targeted by scammers this year, and 29 percent have been victims of fraud in the past, it’s more important than ever to know how to protect your payments.” “
Some people plan to shop during the Black Friday sales because they love shopping.
But with people more conscious of their finances than ever, the survey shows that saving money is a top priority for consumers in Ireland.
It shows that 45 percent of consumers plan to shop online in November to save money on Christmas gifts.
A similar percentage said they plan to use those sales to save money on an essential item they’ve been waiting to buy.
A majority said they enjoy bargaining.
Some of those not planning on buying on Black Friday or Cyber Monday say they are cutting back on spending this year.
Almost one in five say they cannot afford to shop at these clearance sales this year due to rising prices.
Mandy Lamb, Managing Director of Visa UK & Ireland, said: “As fraudsters use increasingly sophisticated techniques to target online shoppers, this is a particularly important time of year to let people know that there is something we can do to protect our to keep payments safe.”
She said Visa’s zero liability policy means individuals will not be held responsible for unauthorized or fraudulent charges made to their card details.
Ms Lamb advised consumers to watch out for grammatical and spelling mistakes, which are a telltale sign of a fraudulent attempt.
Consumers have also been warned against correspondence directing them to take “urgent” action. This is a common tactic used by scammers to provoke the person they are targeting into taking immediate action.
In addition, people are advised to read any message they suspect to someone they trust.
Visa said it might sound obvious, but when people are unsure about a message’s legitimacy, it can help to take it up with someone they trust.
Anyone who thinks they have been scammed should call their bank and explain the situation. Visa said the bank can often help people claim their money back.
https://www.independent.ie/business/personal-finance/online-shoppers-urged-to-be-vigilant-ahead-of-black-friday-as-it-emerges-75pc-of-irish-people-targeted-by-fraudsters-this-year-42151587.html Online shoppers urged to be vigilant ahead of Black Friday as 75 percent of Irish people fall victim to scammers this year