Better Business Bureau warns of Valentine’s Day scams

This Valentine’s Day is shaping up to be big, according to projections by the National Retail Federation, which suggests that consumer spending will reach nearly $24 billion.

As you prepare to celebrate, there are few common scams that you need to be aware of. Whether you’re hoping to spark a new relationship or buying gifts for loved ones, beware of these three scams regularly reported to BBB.

Impostor websites
From fake jewelry sellers to online dating sites, consumers should always be on the alert for impostor websites. Scammers can easily lift official photos, sale promotions and logos directly from the website for a popular jewelry brand. With professional graphics and unbeatable prices, scammers build an attractive website that looks eerily similar to the real thing.

Red flags
• Products are available at extreme discounts.
• The seller requests customers pay with cash transfer apps or cryptocurrency.
• Customer service is unreachable.

Romance scams
Falling victim to a romance scam can be particularly devastating. Victims can lose thousands of dollars, and they’re often left feeling heartbroken and betrayed because they really believed they’d found a good partner. Read more about romance scams for safe online dating advice.

Red flags
• The relationship moves very fast.
• You never meet in person.
• They ask for money.

Fake florist scam
Ordering flowers for Valentine’s Day? Don’t procrastinate or you may end up falling for a scam. BBB has received many reports of shoppers who thought they were ordering flowers from an online florist… but either got nothing at all, or a disappointing arrangement. Don’t let phony florists ruin Valentine’s Day.

Red Flags
• The business has no reviews or bad reviews (always check BBB.org!)
• You can’t find a return policy or satisfaction guarantee.
• The deal is “too good to be true.”

What to do if you encounter a scam
If you encounter a suspected romance scam, cut off all contact with the perpetrator by blocking their accounts and phone number. Then, report your experience to BBB.org/ScamTracker.

For more information about romance scams, visit BBB.org/romance.

About the Better Business Bureau
For more than 100 years, the Better Business Bureau has been helping people find businesses, brands, and charities they can trust. In 2020, people turned to BBB more than 220 million times for BBB Business Profiles on 6.2 million businesses and Charity Reports on 11,000 charities, all available for free at BBB.org. The International Association of Better Business Bureaus is the umbrella organization for the local, independent BBBs in the United States, Canada, and Mexico.