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Cyber Monday and Giving Tuesday await
However, so do scammers, BBB cautions
cyber monday scams
With chances to shop for online deals Monday and the chance give generously on Tuesday, the Better Business Bureau is warning Americans of possible scams.

Following the excitement of Black Friday and Small Business Saturday for shoppers during this season, Cyber Monday awaits with online deals. Hopefully, shoppers will save a bit of their spending for the worthwhile causes that need support the next day, Giving Tuesday. 

But, with these opportunities for deals and charity come risks to the unwary, warns Wichita-based Denise Groene, vice president of the Better Business Bureau’s Kansas Region serving Nebraska, South Dakota, Kansas Plains and southwest Iowa. She provided guidance for safe and productive spending and donating during the Monday and Tuesday events.

Cyber Monday requires caution

The online deals associated Cyber Monday are no longer relegated to that day. Over the last few years, retailers have spread the bargains throughout the holiday season. They’ve been going on for a while now and will likely continue through the coming weeks. 

Cyber Monday began in 2005, when shoppers would return to work on the Monday following Black Friday, access their work computers and shop for sale deals. Since then, the event has turned into a hugely popular time for consumers to find online bargains. These tips can make your Cyber Monday more efficient:

• Plan for it. Get your list together and research the items on it. Stay focused on what you want and resist the pull toward tangential products that pop up in all those online ads.

• Watch out for misleading ads. Is it an incredibly low price on a super-hot product that just sounds too good to be true? It almost certainly is.

• Phony websites abound. Lookalike websites can appear to be from a trusted retailer. But check the web address. Be sure the site uses the correct spelling of a business name and there is legitimate contact information and customer service numbers.

• Look out for businesses you are not familiar with. Check their business profile at Look to see if they are Accredited and view their marketplace history. 

• Are you on a secure web page? Secure addresses begin with “HTTPS,” not simply “HTTP.” Never input your personal or credit card information in forms on non-secure pages.

• Price check. A “best” deal may not be real. Shop around and don’t take their word for it.

• Use rewards and loyalty programs. Your credit card may have special point offers that add up. Many major retailers have loyalty programs that provide savings.

• Buy with a credit card online. If there is a problem later, it eases the process of resolution. Debit cards do not offer the same protections. Especially avoid using prepaid debit cards or wiring money.

• Understand return policies. Read the fine print before purchasing. Some stores may not allow returns for closeout items. 

• Always get gift receipts when you’re buying for others.

Give wisely on Giving Tuesday

Since 2012, the day after Cyber Monday has been designated as Giving Tuesday. The day is a celebration of generosity – a day to consider ways you can give of your time or your money for causes that benefit your local and your global community. If your act of giving includes donations, here are BBB’s tips to make them more meaningful:

• Visit BBB’s website,, to look up evaluations of charities. Their effectiveness, reputation and degree of transparency are all rated using 20 accountability standards.

• Look closely at the name of a charity you are considering giving to. Some less-than-reputable organizations purposely use a name that sounds like a well-known and trustworthy one.

• Visit their website and research their mission, programs, measurable goals, and accomplishments.

• Try to resist on-the-spot requests for donations. Responsible organizations do not just rely on emotionalism.

• To see if you can get a tax deduction for your gift, visit to find whether the organization is one that qualifies.

Be careful during this whirlwind season of shopping and of donations. For answers to any other questions on the above, contact the Better Business Bureau at 800-856-2417 or visit the website   


Kansans among least scammed states


A new study shows Kansas has the second-least online shopping scam cases per capita in the U.S. as the holiday shopping season kicked off on Black Friday.

Americans were expected to see an unprecedented surge in online shopping scams this holiday season as consumers are set to spend a record $209.7 billion buying gifts online. A record $394 million was lost to online shopping scams last year and with inflation surging, consumers desperate for deals will be even more susceptible to scams this year.

Social Catfish – a company that prevents online scams through reverse search technology – Tuesday released a study on States with the Most Online Shopping Scams after analyzing data from the Federal Trade Commission and Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Internet Crime Complaint Center released in 2022.  

Kansas residents filed complaints with the FTC last year at a rate of 33.5 per 100,000.

The top five states for online shopping scam complaints are New Hampshire, Vermont, Washington, Oregon, and Virginia. The bottom five are Rhode Island, Kansas, Illinois, Louisiana, and Texas.