Amazon: New scam warning as holiday season approaches, here's what we know

Amazon is warning customers that online scams are on the increase as we get closer to Christmas.

Amazon: New scam warning as holiday season approaches
© Peter Dazeley - Getty Images
Amazon: New scam warning as holiday season approaches

Amazon is warning of the dangers of online scams at the moment as criminals are targeting victims during the busy holiday season. The tech giant says they have already initiated the removal of more than 20,000 phishing sites and also 10,000 phone numbers they know to have been pursuing impersonation scams, according to Good Morning America.

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Fake order confirmations

Amazon: New scam warning as holiday season approaches picture alliance - Getty Images

The online retail giant went on to describe how 50% of the impersonation scams reported by their customers are conducted by fake order confirmations.

Amazon’s vice president of selling partner services, Dharmesh Mehta reports:

A scammer will send a fake order confirmation looking like you bought something online or in a store and pretend that you need to urgently contact customer service, and they'll give you a link or a phone number to try and contact them.

Once you reply, scammers will then start asking for various details in order to confirm the order. Using details such as your social security number or bank details to defraud you of your money.

Frequent examples of fake messages include asking the customer to confirm that they made an order by clicking a link which then takes them to a fraudulent website. Another is sending a customer messages stating they have been charged for a fictional order and need to click a link or call a number in order to receive a refund.

How to protect yourself

In order to prevent scammers defrauding you, Amazon is advising customers, as per GMA:

  • Do not click on any suspicious links.
  • Do not call or text any phone numbers you don't recognize.
  • Be wary of any sense of urgency.
  • When in doubt, contact customer service directly and file a report.
  • When using email, look for the Amazon smile logo. That is an icon used to verify the message is directly from Amazon.

If you are worried that you may have already been targeted by scammers, follow these steps:

  • Contact your bank immediately.
  • Ask your bank to have the transaction reversed.
  • Cancel your credit card.
  • If you used a gift card, contact the company that issued the gift card and ask for a refund.
  • For Amazon specifically, utilize the company's scam reporting feature at

Online scams are constantly evolving and so customers are being urged to be vigilant about anything that appears suspicious. Since 2018 The Federal Trade Commission says it has received more than 3 million reports of impersonation scam, costing consumers more than $6 billion, as per GMA.

Sources used:

- Good Morning America 'Amazon warns about online scams: How to protect your money'

- Express: 'Amazon issues urgent alert ahead of Black Friday - ignoring it will be costly'

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