Trading Standards have warned Sheffield shoppers to beware buying from rogue retailers before Black Friday tomorrow.
Sheffield’s ‘Not Born Yesterday’ campaign, run in partnership with South Yorkshire Police, is aimed at supporting vulnerable people at particular risk of fraud by raising awareness of the techniques used by scammers.
Tina Weston, a Trading Standards enforcement officer, said: “This is a massive issue in South Yorkshire. For those who fall victim to it, it can be devastating for those who end up losing a lot of money.
“Young people using the internet or new phone apps are often asked to pay a ‘one-off fee’. The elderly can get caught out by phone scams trying to sell them unwanted things.”
With online retailer Amazon bracing itself for its busiest Black Friday ever this year, the increase in online shopping means more people are at risk from fraudulent online organisations.
Ms Weston said shoppers should stick to official, authorised retailers. Products from well-known brands may still be at risk and might not meet the industry safety standards if sent from unofficial companies.
“As it comes up to Christmas, you need to know that what you’re buying is a good gift. Don’t risk something you give to somebody being unsafe. Sometimes you just do not know what you’re buying,” she added.
She said people should always research before they pay for something, and should not just take a special offer on the face value of a Black Friday deal.
Anyone with concerns about rogue traders and scams should contact Trading Standards advisors on 03454 04 05 06.