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Fraud Alert as Cyber Monday Sales Kick Off

The security experts have warned all the consumers of a phishing and gift card scams as the Cyber Monday kicks off.

The US online sales such as blitz which has also become something of a staple across some European countries, specially targeting the UK where it’s predicted that the sales will take the full online spending for the weekend to over £7bn.

However, the shoppers have been urged to watch out for the two gift fraud scams. One of which involves in cyber criminals by using “dirty” money to buy gift cards, which they can then sell on third party sites for discounted price, thereby laundering their funds.

“Gift cards are legitimately traded online by people who, for example, were given a gift card to a store that they never shop at, so instead of a £50 gift card that they will never use, they sell it for £30 and take the cash in return,” explained Trustwave VP of security research, Ziv Mador. “The buyer then gets £20 worth of free credit. This poses a risk to the end customer because if the gift cards are found to be bought with stolen money they could be invalidated.”

In other words, the cyber criminals who used the dirty money to buy the gift cards which they then use to purchase the legitimate goods. These can be available to be re-sold to unsuspecting customers on eBay and similar sites.

As the experts have already warned the consumers of a surge in phishing emails which is designed to coincide with the busy sales period, especially those who is offering a huge discounts on sales.

Cybereason chief security officer, Sam Curry, who has urged the users not to click on any of the links or do not open any attachments, even if they appear to come from the ‘trusted’ vendors.

The phishing emails which could also come from the ‘credit card providers,’ he claimed.

“The consumer stressing out about a high volume of debt they are carrying on multiple credit cards, might receive an email pretending to be from the credit card company saying their account is overdue and is subject to being shut down unless they make a minimum monthly payment,” Curry warned. “The unsuspecting consumer gives away their credit card information and other personable identifiable information.”

One of the company who has estimated sales of around £7bn in the UK from the Black Friday to the Cyber Monday, with shoppers who are spending an average of £220.

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