NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Limited inventory has desperate shoppers panicked. It’s a feeling Elizabeth Goad knows all too well. “You just have a simple dumb moment of like, I need this thing. And it’s in such high demand. Even if I found one that seems too good to be true. I’m still going to try it because I want to get one of these things.”
The Middle Tennessee woman explained her rushed purchase came after months of searching. She had been looking for a PlayStation 5 when she found a site that touted the item she wanted at a great price. She admitted clicking before contemplating, instantly realizing the mistake. “I lost $408.88.”
The fraudulent site forced her to use what she thought was PayPal, but later realized was a knockoff. “I scroll to the bottom, looked at this address and this phone number. I call this phone number. And it was in Florida, despite its address saying Pennsylvania, so I was like, okay, yep, this is wrong,” said Goad. “I was like, okay, now I need to figure out how to file for a scam.”
Goad reported her experience to the Federal Trade Commission and the Better Business Bureau of Middle Tennessee who confirmed the website has major red flags.
“You’re not getting the real McCoy because it’s stuck on a ship in the middle of the ocean right now,” said Robyn Householder, President/CEO BBB Middle Tennessee. “Scammers know that and they’re building sites and marketing efforts just to sell you goods that are completely false.”
But in Goad’s case, she did receive a package, there was just nothing inside. And a phishing email from the fake payment system followed further compromising her accounts.
For all these reasons, the BBB says consumers need to check for several key issues on a site. Look for “scammer grammar” like typos, incorrect punctuation, and unusual statements.
Thankfully, Goad was able to get her money back, but the process was lengthy, “it’s just insanely frustrating and infuriating.”
From now on she vows to stick to big-box retailers and to not fall for the flashy sales.
Scammers are trying new ways to steal your money throughout Middle Tennessee. Ahead of the holidays, protecting your funds is incredibly important. News 2 investigates the new tactics scammers are using now and how to best protect yourself from the bad guys. Watch special reports all day Thursday in every newscast and on WKRN.com.