3 Tips To Avoid Buying Counterfeit Goods While Holiday Shopping

Image courtesy of NBC Los Angeles

It’s hard enough to buy perfect, thoughtful gifts for everyone on your holiday shopping list without having to worry that your hard-earned money is going toward a counterfeit product. But with more and more consumers looking for a good deal online, the likelihood that you’ll eventually come across a bogus-brand coat, tablet, or other gift increases.

Thankfully, NBC Los Angeles reports there are ways for consumers to lessen the chances their virtual carts are filled with counterfeit goods.

While many online merchants like Amazon and Alibaba have increased their enforcement of third-party sellers hawking fake goods, there’s still a chance that you might stumble upon a website promising “real Uggs” that are anything but real.

Related: How To Spot A Counterfeit Sports Jersey

To that end the Los Angeles Police Department and agents from U.S. Homeland Security provided NBC Los Angeles with several tips to assist consumers in avoiding getting scammed.

Here are three ways in which shoppers can make sure the items are the real deal:

• Sounds too good to be true — If you come across a product that claims to be marked down significantly from what it is sold for on other sites, it’s probably not the deal you’re really looking for.

• Buy directly from retailers — One way to ensure you’re getting the name-brand product you want is to buy directly from the company’s website. Be advised that you often pay full sticker price when buying directly, so you could be paying more to be certain it’s not a fake.

Related: Watch Out For Fake Retailer Apps On Your iPhone This Holiday Season

• Look closely — Misspelled names or descriptions can be a telltale sign that a product isn’t what it claims to be.

For more tips on avoiding gifting counterfeit products this year, check out the full list on NBC Los Angeles.

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.