The holiday season brings all kinds of consumers online to shop for the hottest products, but it also can attract the wrong crowd: fraudsters, or those making purchases via stolen credit card information. These shoppers often buy merchandise with the intention of selling it through a secondhand channel.
This year, fraudsters are targeting luxury items that are valuable, but less expensive than the top line picks they went for in 2015, according to research from Forter. Favored items include Michael Kors bags and Ralph Lauren’s “Ricky” bags, Fossil and Tissot watches, diamond pendant necklaces and Marc Jacobs backpacks.
Why are fraudsters targeting these particular items? The Forter report concludes:
These goods are easy to resell, as more consumers are willing to buy resold products at higher prices and at a quicker demand;
The dollar take-away might be smaller per item, but the lower price tag means that they’re easier to steal, since retailers are less suspicious;
These products are widely popular for both gifting and self-gifting; and
They provide immediate gratification, paid for with someone else’s money.
Fraudsters also are expected to make a heavy push for electronics merchandise, such as refurbished Macbooks and accessories, Fitbits, Android phones, headphones and flash memory cards. They will also seek out digital products such as gift cards and blockchain currencies to carry out potential fraudulent purchases.
Forter analyzed nearly three million e-Commerce transactions from September to November 2016 to discover the top items on fraudsters’ wish lists.
Shoppers should also be alert to secondary scams. For example, when selling on a secondhand channel, fraudsters may design their own site or app to steal the customer’s details as well. These sites are often carefully designed to look entirely legitimate.