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  • Writer's pictureMarty Walt

Gift Card Scams: How to Easily Spot and Avoid These Cyber Threats

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Holiday shopping scams are all the rage right now... which is why you need to be extra diligent as the season of giving ramps up!

Gift card scams have a lot in common with garden-variety phishing attacks that leverage deceptive phone calls, emails website, or text messages to steal your valuable information and defraud your money. These scams play on fear, uncertainty, and doubt to trick you into following through.

Here are a few tips from the Oregon Division of Financial Regulation to avoid getting scammed this holiday season:

  • Don't answer unknown numbers - block unwanted calls and text messages.

  • Don't give personal identifying information to unsolicited calls, texts, or email. Hang up, look up their number, and call them to verify.

  • Be skeptical. Ask question and be wary of offers "too good to be true."

  • Resist the pressure to act immediately Scammers use urgency as a tool.

  • Stop and talk to somone you trust. Talking about it can help you spot the scam.

  • Never pay someone who insists you pay with a gift card, money transfer, or cryptocurrency.

If you feel you may have been scammed, the division's consumer advocates may be able to help. They can be reached at 1-888-877-4894 (toll-free) or


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