ACCC has warned consumers not to get carried awaywith Christmas cheer in the coming weeks, and maintain a healthy level of skepticism about promotions promising the world. The ACCC have outlined the 10 scams of Christmas, a sort of commandment guide to help avoid being swindled this year…

1. Holiday scams: scammers approach victims on their holidays offering expensive memberships to scam travel clubs and fake discount hotel vouchers.

2. Flight booking scams: where consumers think they have booked flights online but the website they booked through is fake and so are their bookings.

3. Online shopping scams: the perfect gift is purchased online, but never arrives.

4. Romance scams: if someone you have met online asks you for money as a result of some misfortune it may be a scam.

5. Charity scams: charities often seek donations at this time of year – scammers try to camouflage themselves as genuine charities sites and capitalise on consumers generosity.

6. Telephone scams: particularly prevalent and varied this year including cold calls claiming computers infected by viruses, offering fake government grants or seeking bank details in order to process a bank fee or tax refund.

7. Weight loss scams: for those anxious to shed Christmas kilos, miracle weight loss scams may be attractive – be wary.

8. Door to door scams: an easy way to shop or lose money? Some traders are legitimate but others may sell poor quality products with no guarantees.

9. Visa scams: when trying to help a friend or family member to visit from overseas in time for Christmas, these guaranteed services may not be all the seem, and

10. Lottery scams: out of the blue winnings from a lottery you never entered? Scammers ask for money to ‘process’ your win but you will never receive the money.

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