MILWAUKEE — The Milwaukee Bucks are world champions, and though there’s plenty of merchandise on the shelves to celebrate the win, shoppers should be careful.
The Wisconsin Better Business Bureau (BBB) has advised that Bucks fans be wary of potential merchandise scams, and offered a list of tips on how to spot deceptive marketing. Here’s how to protect yourself from scams, according to the BBB’s press release.
“Be wary of deals that seem too good to be true or search results when using terms, such as ‘cheap Milwaukee Bucks jerseys’. If the price of an item is significantly less than what it is on other well-known retailers’ sites, this is a red flag that it might be a scam. One such site offered Giannis Antetokounmpo jerseys for $26, far below the $150 price tag at the Milwaukee Bucks’ official pro shop store
Research the company before you purchase. If the company is unfamiliar, check BBB.org to see if it has a BBB Business Profile, or BBB Scam Tracker to see if anyone else has reported it as a scam. Look for contact information on the website such as a phone number, or a brick-and-mortar address, as well as a robust social media presence to help determine if the company truly does exist
Shop with a credit card. In case of a fraudulent transaction, a credit card provides additional protections; it’s easier to dispute charges that you didn’t approve or to get your money back if there is a problem. Debit cards, prepaid cards or gift cards don’t have the same protections as a credit card
Never wire money or use a prepaid debit card as payment. Both payment types are often requested by scammers and, once the money is gone, there is no way to get the money back
Think before you click. Be especially cautious about email solicitations and ‘click bait' online ads on social media sites, where many sketchy retailers advertise great deals that don’t measure up. Or, they could download malware onto your computer”
According to the BBB, scams have already begun to target Milwaukee fans in the hours following the team’s Game 6 victory.
“Unfortunately, what consumers receive from these fraudulent sites is cheap, knock-off merchandise (if they receive anything at all), with glued-on logos, misspelled player names, poor quality and more. One Appleton consumer complained to BBB, ‘It was a bad fake jersey that was unwearable - the neck hole was too small for any human to put their head through it.’”