Holiday Scams

This warning goes beyond the normal warning about personal information. These scam artists want to steal your money, and the Financial Services Department says these thieves have found some devious ways to try and get to it.

Along with the holiday spirit comes the holiday scam artist.

"Scam artist look for the holiday season to prey upon people. They look for the giving spirit. Take caution if you buy on line or over the phone," says Justin Glover.

But most people who go shopping on line know how to protect themselves. The Department of Financial Services says there's another scam out there and they say it starts this time of year.

"These scams are popular this time of year and around tax time. If you're solicited by a company that wants you to pay an up front fee and they'll go to the IRS and make a claim for you like slavery reparations or an advance on social security most are scams."

"Make sure you know who you're dealing with. If they don't have a phone number or an actual mailing address, these are red flags."

Chief financial officer Tom Gallagher says if a company is based outside this country, then they are outside our laws and it could be almost impossible to get your money back in a scam.

The department does know of at least one case involving a Florida woman who took out a health insurance policy and had the company bill her credit card. A short time later, she and her husband were hospitalized and the company wouldn't honor the claim.