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Agriculture Commissioner Warns Shoppers Of Black Friday Scams

black_friday_photo_ap.jpg
John Minchillo
/
AP via The Miami Herald
Shoppers wait in line for Apple iPhone purchases during a Black Friday sale at a Target store, Friday, Nov. 23, 2018, in Newport, Ky.

Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam is warning shoppers to beware of scams as they hit the malls on Black Friday and get ready for online deals on Cyber Monday.

Putnam said some retailers inflate prices ahead of Black Friday to create the illusion of a large price cut. In a press release, Putnam recommended researching normal retail prices ahead of time.

He also advised online shoppers to look carefully at a website’s domain name. Some bogus websites will closely replicate a legitimate site’s name, using incorrect spelling or hyphens.

Additionally, a new report from cybersecurity company RiskIQ shows mobile shoppers are especially vulnerable.

According to the report, fraudulent apps are copying leading retailers’ branding, fooling shoppers into downloading unsafe apps and giving them sensitive data.

Consumers who believe they have been the victim of fraud can contact the consumer protection and information hotline at 1-800-435-7352 or, for Spanish speakers, 1-800-352-9832.

For consumer protection information and resources, visit FloridaConsumerHelp.com.