Tis the Season to... Remain Careful! What You Need To Know About Buying Gift Cards
With the holidays upon us, along with the pressure to find gifts for everyone amid supply chain issues, gift cards prove a convenient way to ensure that a tough-to-buy-for person gets exactly what they want. This year, more than ever, gift cards are seen as a win-win for the consumer and small businesses, especially those that have seen a downturn in sales due to the pandemic.
Whether buying online or in store, there are steps you can take to protect your investment.
Only Purchase From Reputable Sellers It is always best to purchase directly from the source. Big brands like Apple and Amazon have a stake in making sure their cards are valid and easily redeemable, so they offer recourse if you lose a card or misplace the claim code. Both Apple and Amazon give detailed information about how to protect yourself from common fraud.
Be wary of Gift Card Exchanges Gift card exchanges are online markets where anyone can sell unwanted gift cards and/or buy pre-owned cards at discounted prices. Some sites set up exchanges between sellers and buyers but take no responsibility for fraudulent cards. Other sites such as Card Cash offer purchase guarantees.
Insurance Coverage In response to the rising threats of gift card schemes, some companies, such as Pennsylvania’s Erie Insurance Company, added gift card and gift certificate reimbursement coverage to their home insurance policies. This feature reimburses customers for remaining balances on eligible gift cards that are no longer valid, either due to expiration or business closure.
As always, if in doubt of the validity of an online gift don't click! It's a smart idea to check directly with the company. Happy and safe shopping!
Roark Tech Services is an expert in cybercrime and cybersecurity best practices. We are well positioned to give the best suggestions and recommendations to our clients when it comes to making the right decision for any small business. Always consult with us first. If you don’t have an IT Partner that you can trust to give you the right support and advice, we’d love to help. Contact us!