ATLANTA (CBS46) -- As many stood in lines early Friday morning to get the best deals, others are planning to shop from the comfort of their homes.
While buying online from a major retailer is usually a safe bet, Better Call Harry cautions that buying from individual sellers can be a gamble unless you know what to look for.
Only a few seconds into Harry's online holiday shopping spree, he found countless PlayStation consoles available from one seller, who in turn asked Harry to message him via WhatsApp under the name "PS5 Lord."
Thinking he had found a direct line to PlayStation Heaven, Harry was surprised to hear that he instead reached what sounded like a bank, a voice on the other line saying, "hello my name is Curah Bank I’m here to help you with your banking needs.”
While millions of legitimate sellers rely on Instagram, Poshmark, Etsy, and more. While the majority are reputable, how can buyers know for sure?
For Instagram, buyers should always look for the blue checkmark to signify that the seller is verified on the platform. On Etsy, pay attention to the reviews and number of sales. Verified seller on Poshmark are given the designation of "Posh Ambassador."
A red flag seen with the PlayStation 5 seller was their attempt to lead potential buyers off of the website or platform to complete the transaction elsewhere.
Simone Williams with the Better Business Bureau cautions to be wary of scammers, "if they say they render their services but say that you have to pay through cash app or paypal or any peer-to-peer to peer transactions because what happens is, if you purchase an item or service, once that money is gone it’s gone."
The suspicious PlayStation 5 seller, PS5.forsale, redirected Harry to gameshop0.com. In an attempt to prove he was real, the seller then texted a picture of a phony driver's license, saying "you have absolutely nothing to worry about… you won’t lose nothing if you put a little bit of trust on me…"
Harry had no trust to give, especially after receiving an automated message saying, “I am still learning, I will let my creator know about this request of yours.”
So, what are buyers to do? Better Call Harry advises that they only do business on the website where they found the item they want. As far as payment, PayPal, Apple Pay, or Google Pay are okay to use as long as they're linked to your credit card.