CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – The Better Business Bureau (BBB) has been receiving multiple reports of an online shopping scheme on TikTok.
According to the BBB, this scheme starts with a disgruntled employee who is supposedly seeking revenge and ends with victims buying hundreds of dollars in fake merchandise.
The scheme works by someone coming across a TikTok video that has someone claiming that they were recently fired at a jewelry store. They are angry about being fired because they feel that it is undeserved. To take revenge on the store, they are sharing an employee discount code with anyone who wants it, and this code gives up to 100 percent off the company’s merchandise.
One consumer reported, “As you add more things from the website to your cart, the shipping cost increases disproportionately. However, this still seems like a ‘deal’ because you are getting a 100% discount on (faux) jewelry that costs $100-200.” That’s not the only warning sign. The consumer also added, “There is no cancellation mechanism on their website/order confirmation email, no social media, no address, and no phone number. You can only contact them via an email address.”
If you fall for this scheme, the high-quality jewelry you thought you ordered might be cheaply made knockoffs, or nothing at all, and out of your money.
This scheme could also work with high-cost items such as electronics or designer handbags. BBB has provided some tips to help you avoid online shopping schemes:
- Don’t fall for deals that are too good to be true. Schemers love to draw people in with this bait. If a deal seems extraordinarily good, stay skeptical. Research the company thoroughly before you buy.
- Only shop with reputable companies. It’s always best to shop with companies you already know and trust. That said, if you come across an appealing item from an unfamiliar business, it’s especially important to do research. Look up the company’s website, physical address, and contact information. Read reviews from customers on third-party websites and review comments left on their social media pages, too. You can even search the company name and the word “scam” just to be safe.
- Always make payments with your credit card. When shopping online, use your credit card to pay. Controlling fraudulent charges (and possibly getting your money back) will be much easier with this payment method.
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