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**CONSUMER ALERT** CFO Jimmy Patronis: Beware of Thanksgiving Holiday Scams

11/21/2023
For Immediate Release: Tuesday, November 21, 2023
Contact: Office of Communications, Communications@MyFloridaCFO.com, 850.413.2842

**CONSUMER ALERT**

CFO Jimmy Patronis: Beware of Thanksgiving Holiday Scams

~ Stay Alert for Scammers on Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday ~

Tallahassee, Fla. – Today, Chief Financial Officer (CFO) Jimmy Patronis is warning consumers to beware of potential scams surrounding Black Friday, Cyber Monday and Giving Tuesday as Floridians begin their search for holiday shopping deals and offers. CFO offers four tips to avoid becoming a victim of fraud or identity theft this year, as consumers are expected to spend a total of $130 billion during the period from Thanksgiving Day to Cyber Monday. In 2022, American’s donated over $3.1 billion in 24 hours to charitable causes during Giving Tuesday.

CFO Jimmy Patronis said, “It is the most wonderful time of the year, and as Floridians begin to prepare for the holidays and take part in Black Friday, Cyber Monday, and Giving Tuesday. Black Friday and Cyber Monday are the biggest shopping days of the year, which makes it an opportune time for scammers to take advantage of consumers. Giving Tuesday can also be pay day for scammers looking to make a quick buck off the kindness of your heart. The only way to combat these bad actors and not become a victim of fraud, is to know the signs of a scam. All Floridians should keep an eye on their bank accounts and monitor any suspicious activity. This is a great time of year to shop, but it is also the time to be alert. Visit FraudFreeFlorida.com to learn more about common scams, report fraud in your area, and protect your family from grinch-like predators who would love nothing more than to steal the holiday cheer from out under you.”

Four Tips to Protect Yourself from Thanksgiving Holiday Scams:

  1. If it sounds too good to be true, then it probably is. Be careful of unfamiliar merchants and be extra wary of items listed at prices well below those of other shops. The ultimate bargain may really be bogus or stolen goods.
  2. Use a credit card instead of cash or debit. Credit cards offer consumer protection if things go wrong with a purchase.
  3. Be careful of credit and coupon offers. Those last-minute deals that offer discounts in exchange for opening up a new credit account can be a trap to make you divulge financial information.
  4. Watch your account balances. Monitor your checking, savings, credit and any others for unauthorized charges or deposits. Report any suspicious activity immediately.

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About CFO Jimmy Patronis 
Chief Financial Officer and State Fire Marshal Jimmy Patronis is a statewide elected official and a member of Florida’s Cabinet who oversees the Department of Financial Services. CFO Patronis works each day to fight insurance fraud, support Florida’s firefighters, and ensure the state’s finances are stable to support economic growth in the state. Follow the activities of the Department on Facebook (FLDFS) and Twitter (@FLDFS).

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