Trading Standards – Christmas Shopping Scams

Photo by Dima D

Offers too good to be true!

Leading up to Christmas please be aware of scam adverts online and social media for popular Christmas presents that are just too good to be true and not advertised by an official retailer. An example of an offer too good to be true has recently been investigated by Which?

Which? found active scam ads promoting the £350 Jo Malone advent calendar for around £30. The official limited edition Jo Malone advent calendar retails for £350 and includes lotions, perfume, toiletries and candles.

Clues to look out for in these scam adverts are the bad spelling and grammar, and that the sellers use a random profile name unrelated to the actual brand, in this instance the Jo Malone brand. Some of the adverts led to malicious websites phishing for personal details.

The scam sites include a countdown timer and notifications about purchases in ‘real time’ and list the number of advent calendars in stock. These are typical tactics used to make victims act under pressure, without taking the time to verify the authenticity of the information.

Here are a few more tips to avoid shopping scams:

  • Browse the website – look out for bad spelling and grammar, as well as the absence of terms and conditions and contact details.
  • Check the URL – if it’s not the brand’s official website, it could be a scam page.
  • Check how long ago the website was created by using a domain checker such as – a newly created website should raise suspicions.

To report a scam ad on Facebook, select the three-dot icon on the right-hand side of the page and press ‘report’. Scam websites, like these dodgy phishing websites, can be reported to the National Cyber Security Centre.

Do not be tempted to give the scammers any further details, even if they claim to be ‘refunding ‘ you. If you think you may have been scammed, call your bank immediately using the number on the back of your bank card and report it to Action Fraud.

For the full article please follow this link: Watch out for scam Facebook ads for bogus Jo Malone advent calendars – Which? News