City Central Police: 12 Scams of Christmas

City Central Police: 12 Scams of Christmas

Please see below typical scams to be aware of in particular at this time of the year.


The 12 scams to be aware of this Christmas are:

1. HOLIDAYS: Travellers should be wary of scammers who approach them on holidays

and offer expensive membership to travel clubs that do not exist and fake discount

hotel vouchers. A Jetset consultant said people should also ignore phone calls

offering “free” trips to locations such as Florida. In addition people using social

networking websites such as Facebook and Twitter while on a gateway could also

result in travel-related scams. Sometimes someone will update their status saying

they are in a particular location then hackers will somehow contact friends and family

on their friends list, pretending to be that person, saying they’ve run out of money and

provide bank details that don’t belong to the user of that account.

2. FLIGHT BOOKINGS: People have been caught out booking flights on websites that

are fake, meaning their booking does not exist and their money is gone. It has been

suggested that dealing with a travel agent face-to-face was the only way to avoid

potential scams and if using the internet, use websites of specific airlines to minimise


3. ONLINE SHOPPING: People need to ensure they are dealing with reputable retailers

and that the domain names of online store matches the company’s name. Also check

shipping time and costs to avoid disappointment.

4. ROMANCE: Online dating websites should be approached with caution. Anyone

who asks you for money is likely to be a scammer.

5. CHARITY: Charities often seek donations at this time of year, but scammers can

camouflage themselves as genuine charities to capitalise on consumers’ generosity.

If someone is asking for a donation, ask to see identification that they belong to the

charity. If you are donating online, avoid clicking on suspicious links in emails, as

they may be linked to fake websites. Never fill out forms in messages that ask for

personal or financial information or passwords. A reputable charitable organisation

is unlikely to ask for your personal details via email.

6. PHONE SCAMS: Be careful of calls from scammers offering fake government

grants or people supposedly from banks, wanting bank details to process a fee or

tax refund.

7. WEIGHT LOSS: Companies offering “miracle” weight-loss schemes may seem

attractive, but many do not deliver. Be wary of products that have no scientific

evidence, are sold by unqualified individuals or suggest fast weight loss, such as

being able to “lose 30kg in 30 day”.

8. DOOR-TO-DOOR: Some door-to-door salesmen sell poor quality products with no

guarantees. Check that they have ID. Signs the person might not be genuine

include if they turn up late at night or visit again after you have said no or demand

you accept an offer on the spot.

9. CREDIT CARD SCAMS: A scam doing the rounds involves someone pretending to

be a family member or friend who has decided to visit you for Christmas by saying

they need money to do so. Do not give them your card details.

10. LOTTERY SCAMS: Received an email saying you’ve won a lottery you can’t

remember entering? Scammers will ask for money to process the win, but you won’t

get the money.

11. CHRISTMAS CARDS: Several charity Christmas cards donate as little as 10

percent of the card’s wholesale price to the aligned cause. Buyers “need to be

aware they are not making a direct donation when they are buying charity Christmas

cards, but rather consider these cards as a way to spread goodwill and awareness

about a cause.

12. SPORTS INVESTMENT: These can include computer prediction software or betting

syndicates. Scammers try to convince you that their system can guarantee a profit

on sporting events. Schemes are camouflaged as legitimate investments when they

are just a form of gambling and, in many cases, scams.


If you are victim of a scam or know a person that is please report it to your local Police Station.



Kelly Stewart
Crime Prevention Officer
City Central LAC
9265 6468