Tips on how to avoid scams when back-to-school shopping

Identity fraud expert Bryan Lewis — CEO of Intellicheck — speaks with WTOP's Kyle Cooper about back-to-school scams.

Looking for a deal on back-to-school shopping? Scammers may be looking to take advantage of you.

This warning comes as Americans are set to spend around $890 per child this year on back-to-school supplies and clothes, according to the National Retail Federation.

“The bad guys know this and they’re coming at everybody with deals to try and get their information,” said Bryan Lewis, CEO of Intellicheck and ID theft expert.

Fraudsters will often send out coupons through email or on social media promising savings on common back-to-school items.

Lewis told WTOP that consumers should be aware of any link that they click on.

“A lot of clickbait pop-up ads, things like that … are going to ask for information. So be very careful, check first, hover over that link, see what the link really is before you click on it, which might drop malware on your computer,” he said.

If you have your identity stolen, report it immediately to the police.

“You can go to the FTC website and fill out a form that your identity has been stolen,” Lewis said. “The sooner that you report it, the easier it is.”

Lewis also warns that you may not be the only target in your household.

“They’re even targeting your kids on their social media. Tell your kids don’t give out information,” he said.

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Luke Lukert

Since joining WTOP Luke Lukert has held just about every job in the newsroom from producer to web writer and now he works as a full-time reporter. He is an avid fan of UGA football. Go Dawgs!

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