BBB Nebraska warns against online gift exchange scams

November 25, 2018

OMAHA - The “Secret Sister” holiday gift exchange scam is again showing up on Facebook and other social media sites. Better Business Bureau Nebraska Sr. Communications Specialist Jeff Niebaum says it sounds like a great way to get a lot of gifts this holiday season.

Niebaum says, “It is a post that claims where participants will receive up to 36 gifts in exchange for sending just one gift valued at $10. The users are encouraged to invite others to participate in the holiday exchange.”

Niebaum says you will not receive anything in return. Those who reached out to the BBB they are unsure as to what is going on. They participated, sent their information and sent a gift but didn’t receive anything at all. He says on rare occasions a person has received one gift but nothing close to what they have promised.

Niebaum says this is a way that scammers are phishing for information. He says, “They will ask for the person you are sending to, their information, your information. Once you give them that they have your name, your mailing information and they will contact you in the future with other scams. The best thing you can do is delete it.”

Here is another reason you will want to avoid taking part in online gift exchanges. They are illegal. This falls under the pyramid scheme and this is considered illegal gambling. Niebaum says participating in this could lead to some legal ramifications.

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