Our Chicago fraud attorneys have learned something about consumer gift cards: The same characteristics that make them such stress-free presents – gift cards are copious, easy to find, and easy to use – also make them prime real estate for scammers.
Here are just two ways that thieves are taking advantage of consumers by using gift cards:
Gift Card Scam No. 1: Telephone Solicitations. Consumers should generally be on heightened alert whenever someone calls with a phone solicitation, but most especially when the caller is seeking personal or financial information such as a credit card number. One common gift card scam during the holidays is for these callers to offer a “free gift card” for a well-known or popular store and then request payment information to cover the card’s shipping costs.
Gift Card Scam No. 2: Point-of-Purchase Tricks. Now that every store from big-box chains on down to your corner market generally carries a variety of in-aisle gift cards, scammers have found ways to tamper with them to their benefit. One trick involves removing bar code stickers, recording the card’s information, and then replacing the sticker before the consumer gets to the card. Then, when someone buys and activates the card, scammers deplete the card’s value before the recipient ever has a chance to use their gift.
If you believe you were the victim of this or another type of consumer fraud, please contact Markoff Leinberger online or call our law offices at 1 (888) 517-9115. Our Chicago consumer fraud attorneys accept cases from throughout the Midwest and nationwide.