According to the Better Business Bureau, more than 10% of online shopping scams last year came from the military community. Active duty military and their spouses were more likely to report losing money to these types of scams than non-military consumers.
Recognizing July as Military Consumer Month, Attorney General Jeff Landry offers tips for military members and their families to protect themselves against fraud.
“The brave men and women of our armed forces make enormous sacrifices for our nation, but the unique demands of their service often leave them vulnerable to criminals,” said Attorney General Landry. “So I encourage all active duty, reserve members, veterans and their families to learn more about fraud, scams, identity theft and unscrupulous companies.”
Attorney General Landry, a veteran, urges military families to:
- Use secure Internet connections. Avoid public Wi-Fi which can put your personal and financial information at risk.
- Monitor credit reports. Check your reports as they may warn you of identity theft.
- Do research before you buy. Examine the BBB website for the brand or retailer.
- Avoid quick buys on social media. Confirm that the online retailer is an authorized reseller.
- Use reliable payment methods. Use traceable transactions and secure websites that offer buyer or seller protection.
- Plan ahead. Place an active duty alert on credit reports at no charge, as businesses are required to take additional steps before extending credit on behalf of active duty personnel serving overseas.
To find other ways our military members can protect themselves, Attorney General Landry encourages them to consult his Resource Guide for Military Members and Veterans.