You better watch out, you better not cry, you better not pout, I’m telling you why.  The scam artists, the only criminals we call artists, are coming to town.  Among the hottest items during this holiday season are the new Xbox One and the Sony PlayStation 4 so you can be pretty confident that there will be scams selling phony versions of these or other scams in which the scammer will take your money and you will get absolutely nothing in return.  It has already been reported by NetNames, a brand protection company that there have been 100,000 online scams on numerous websites.  Many of these scams required payment to be through wired money which is always a tip off that you might be dealing with a scam because once money has been wired, it is effectively gone forever without recourse.  Again, as you would expect, these phony Xbox One and Sony PlayStation 4 offers are for incredibly low prices, often less than a quarter of the real prices for these gaming consoles.


Only buy from reputable companies with which you are familiar and even then, if you are buying online, make sure that you have gone to the real website and not just merely made a typographical error when typing in their URL and end up at a phony website.  Only use a credit card when paying for online purchases.  If it turns out to be a fraud, the worst result is that you will lose $50 and most credit card companies will not even hold you responsible for that amount.  If you use a debit card, you risk losing your entire bank account if you do not pick up on the fraud quickly and even if you do notice and report the fraud to your bank immediately, your account will be frozen while the bank investigates the fraud.  If you choose not to follow my advice and go to an online company that is not a major company with which you are familiar and know is legitimate, check out the company with the Federal Trade Commission, your state’ s attorney general’s consumer protection division and also Google the name of the company with the word “scam” and see what comes up.