Consumer warning: BBB releases list of most popular scams

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Consumer Protection Week
Online Fraud

COLUMBUS, OH - The Better Business Bureau's Scam Tracker saw an average of about one scam report every 11 minutes over the course of 2017. BBB has released the top trends consumers should watch out for.

Online purchases took over the top spot as the riskiest scam. BBB of Central Ohio President Kip Morse said it usually begins with a victim making a payment online for a good or service. That promised item is never delivered.

"Online scams has jumped to the number one spot," said Morse. "Not surprising, because it carries a lot of the problems. It's got the impersonations, the fake websites and more. You're going into it thinking it's got something you need, then the scam is coming to you."

Morse said some of the most common online purchase items that were reported as scams over the last year include:
- Pets
- Clothing
- Cosmetics
- Electronics
- Automobiles

"You want to make sure you do a double-check," said Morse. "You want to do a search online and make sure you are on a site that is legitimate. You want to be the one that is initiating. So, if its a company you think is approaching you with an offer, you should go outside that link and make sure they're still giving you that offer."

Morse explained there are actions consumers can take while online. He encourages people to start any website address with a secure location using 'https.' Morse said using credit cards for purchases instead of any type of pre-paid gift card is a good measure and he discourages people from wiring money.

For more information, the full Scam Risk Annual Report is available at