The 12 Scams of Christmas #6: The "It" Gift Scam

The 12 Scams of Christmas #6: The "It" Gift Scam

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Weeks before the holiday season officially kicked off, it became clear which items were going to top this year's wish list: the new iPhone 5 and the iPad Air. Weeks before the holiday season officially kicked off, it became clear which items were going to top this year's wish list: the new iPhone 5 and the iPad Air.
Usually when stock of that "must have" gift get low and shopping days are scarce, scammers jump into place. Usually when stock of that "must have" gift get low and shopping days are scarce, scammers jump into place.

By DREW GARDNER
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Each holiday season has that gift no one wants to be left without on Christmas morning, and it's usually the one that scammers use to bait their victims.

Whether it's a toy or new gadget, it becomes a mission for many people to score one before they are all sold out.

Scam number 6: The "It" Gift Scam

Weeks before the holiday season officially kicked off, it became clear which items were going to top this year's wish list: the new iPhone 5 and the iPad Air.

Usually when stock of that "must have" gift get low and shopping days are scarce, scammers jump into place.

"You'll have these websites saying 'We have this item. We have plenty of them, so here is your price,'" said Jerry Tipton of the Better Business Bureau of Greater East Tennessee. "It's always cheaper than what you would buy at a retail store."

They prey on that last minute desperation.

"Many parents will do anything to get it for their children, and it gets too close to Christmas, and they will buy it," said Tipton.

Then once the money is out of your account, there is no sign of the scammers or that brand new iPad.

Experts say often times, those can't miss prices are a big red flag.

"If you see an item that is priced too good to be true, 99.9 percent of the time it will be," said Tipton.

The best advice is to stick to well-known retailers and if those items are sold out a gift card may be the best option so they can get buy the item after the holiday when stocks are back up and prices are usually down.


Our 12 Scams of Christmas continues Wednesday, Nov. 20 with a warning for those heading out of town for the holidays. Whether it's to visit family or escape on tropical vacation, we have a look at how scammers may try to derail those plans.

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