AMHERST, N.Y. (WIVB) — It’s the most wonderful time of the year, even for scammers. The hustle and bustle of the holiday season makes many people easy targets.
Amherst Police Officer Craig Johnson told News 4, “Everyone is rushing around, last minute shopping I think people fall prey to these because they want to get their shopping done quickly and they don’t really pay attention to what they’re doing.”
Every year there are new sophisticated email scams exploiting shoppers. In Amherst, police say they’ve received several calls about one particular email scam.
Scammers pose as retailers, banks or even shipping companies and send emails that look real with subject lines like “Order Confirmation”, “Status Notification”, or “Package Undeliverable.”
Officer Johnson said, “You get an email saying that your delivery was delivered to your house so you have to download this form to obtain the information on the package and when you download the form it contains a virus that can affect your computer.”
Officer Johnson said your best bet is to go to the post office or shipping company in person and avoid opening any forms online.
The better business bureau says unless you’ve logged onto a site with a username and password, never give a website any personal information.
Even during this busy season, there are times it’s better to slow down and use caution.
Claire Rosenweig from the Better Business Bureau said, “Everybody’s all excited. They’re shopping, they’re shipping, and scammers love this.”