Buyer beware: Metro police receive 62 reports of credit fraud this week alone

Photo: WKRN

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Friday is Free Shipping Day, and over 900 retailers are covering the shipping for whatever you buy.

But buyer beware: Metro police warn to be wary because in the mix of legitimate stores will be some scammers.

One of the biggest scams to beware of on Free Shipping Day is look-alike websites. Scammers are so sophisticated they’re able to mimic entire sites.

Remember to check for the “https” in the address bar. The ‘s’ means you’re on a secure site.

Sergeant Michael Warren investigates scams everyday and says, so far this week, he’s gotten 62 complaints of credit card fraud. So far this year, more than 2,600.

The fraud ramps up during the holiday season.

“They didn’t roll over this morning, get out of bed, and decide to become a scam artist, this is what they did yesterday, this is what they did a month ago, this is what they did a year ago,” said Sgt. Warren, Criminal Investigation Division, Fraud/Pawn Unit.

It isn’t just online scams that put your credit card at risk.

“This can happen so many ways. This can be a server writing down your card number, this can be you putting it in a phishing site like I was explaining it earlier, and it could just be someone stealing your card, you requested a new card and they steal it out of your mail box,” explained Sgt. Warren.

Sergeant Warren says you have to be worried about skimmers at ATMs or gas pumps. Look for a seal on the pump before you buy to make sure your pump is secure.

Sergeant Warren says you need to be careful when you hand over your credit card at restaurants. He suggests blocking out the CVV number on the back of your card. Scammers need the CVV number to use your card online.

Just remember, if you block out the number, make sure you have it written down somewhere else for your records.