February 1, 2019
Writer: Virginia Henry

The Super Bowl brings a lot more than just chips and dip and funny commercials. During the hype, scams increase.

“With the Super Bowl coming up we do see an increase in people trying to buy jersey’s and sports paraphernalia online,” said Jeremy Johnson the market manager for Idaho’s Better Business Bureau Market Place. “We do tend to see an increase in people getting counterfeit products or getting on a website that looks like it has a great deal and unfortunately they don’t receive their merchandize or what they get isn’t what they thought and they have a hard time getting their money back.”

Recently, the BBB received a report that a woman had ordered her son and husband jerseys for the big day. The merchandise never arrived and all her efforts to contact the business were fruitless. She hasn’t been able to get any of her money back.

If you have had an experience like this or a different scam you can tell the BBB on their BBB Scam Tracker.

“That is our online portal where people who have had a bad experience in the marketplace can go online and write down and report what has happened to them,” Johnson said.

If you’re unsure what to keep an eye out for, scams can often come through social media pop ups or random emails with promises of great deals.

“A lot of those where they’re taking you to maybe an online website or somewhere that you’re not familiar with, those have to be a red flag,” Johnson explained.

“Anytime you’re going to a retailer or an online business that maybe you haven’t done business with before, it’s best to just take a minute and stop and do some research and make sure that that’s a legitimate business,” Johnson suggested.

You can check out businesses on bbb.org or even just through Google. Another great way to double check a business’s validity is to look at reviews from others.

During hype seasons like the Super-bowl there will also often be fake websites created that are very similar to the original like nfl.net instead of the real nfl.com or something similar.

“If you look at a website and it just looks a little different than it should be, maybe colorings off, there’s misspelled words, something looks a little different that’s when you want to be wary that maybe this isn’t the website you should be on,” Johnson said.

In addition to scams surrounding the Super Bowl, phone scams are circulating here in Idaho as well.

Often these scams are like people supposedly selling insurance or relief from student loans or a load of other things. Many people often ask, “How did they get my information?”

“One of the biggest ways your personal information is getting out there, unfortunately, is data breaches,” Johnson explained.

“Another way your information is getting out there is public record. Some of your information is public record and unfortunately scammers who do a lot of illegal things can sometimes obtain your information very legally. Through census reports, county, city, community, there’s just lots of ways your information can be obtained.”

It’s always good to simply not give out personal information over the phone.