SAN ANTONIO -- The season for glad tidings and gift giving is upon us, but the last thing anyone wants is to be taken advantage of, either by online scams or the fine print from major retailers.
A few clicks can turn your holiday shopping into a colossal headache. Whether paying with plastic in stores, or buying gifts online, people need to be careful.
Jefferson Bank's Cyber Security expert Roman Medina said every year around this time, more red flags go up.
"It's very important for folks to know the websites that they're going to, that they shop at reputable websites. Look for the green secure check on their browser to be sure the information is being securely sent encrypted," Medina said.
More than ever, shoppers are bombarded with advertisements that direct them to websites, some real and others not so legit. Medina said people looking for deals are easy prey for online scammers, and people should know the fraud protection available on your cards.
"The most important thing is the devices they're shopping from, whether it's their computer, laptop, or cell phone, that it is fully patched and up to date," said Medina.
Even when you're leaving the house and hitting the malls, you still need to look out for your money.
"Take this time before you hit the shops to read the fine print on these ads and do some price comparisons," said Miguel Segura with San Antonio's Better Business Bureau.
Segura recommends keeping track of the dates for return policies, especially if when heading out this weekend to do Christmas shopping.
"We also want to be careful with things like restocking fees, which happens with a lot of things like electronics a lot of high ticket items," Segura said.
Segura said one of the biggest tips people can remember is that a customer has rights.
"Any transaction made online has to be shipped by the date it was promised by that website or by that company. If there was no date that was indicated, within 30 days of the transaction, if that time passes, as a consumer we do have the right to cancel that order and request a refund," Segura said.
The Better Business Bureau is also reminding people to ask for gift receipts. That way, the person getting the gift can easily bring it back without a hassle.
Also, paying with credit cards can offer an extra level of protection over debit cards.