It's still calm out there right now. So before the holiday shopping frenzy begins, how about a refresher course on do's and don'ts to avoid getting ripped off. "This really is the time of the year when we see an increased number of scams going on," District Attorney George Gascon told ABC7 News.
Gascon's tips to prevent being victimized include using a credit card rather than debit -- savvy shoppers know why. "If anything goes wrong, you have recourse to go back to your credit card company," one such shopper told ABC7 News.
That's right. There's better fraud protection.
Another tip -- if you shop online, stick with trusted websites. "They usually have security verification signs," another shopper said. On trusted websites, the symbol "https" can be seen in the URL.
Watch out for too-good-to-be-true deals and watch out for yourself. Don't get distracted on your cell phone and be aware of your surroundings. "I just use common sense, basically just put the stuff in the trunk of the car, make sure I'm parked in a safe area," shopper Afshin Arianjam said.
All these tips are just common sense, but before the civilized holiday shopping scene turns into chaos, Gascon says we could all use these reminders. "We've just got to keep thinking about it and frankly, going through this is helpful personally for me because this is stuff I need to be doing," he said.