Hobby-related scams on the rise
During the pandemic, new hobbies became a fun way to keep busy and stay connected. Many people stuck with them, but now fraud is a growing concern as hobby-related scams are on the rise.
The scams are happening in person or through social media. Scammers are gaining people’s trust, then trying to sell them something, take their money and never deliver the promised product. Particular targets are hobbies that include fixing up old cars or crafting.
AARP said some of the scams involve selling fictitious car parts and inexpensive fake sewing machines.
They’re reminding people that peer to peer payment apps like Venmo, Zelle or Cash App are for family, friends or at the very least people you've met in person. If the price of an item is really low, that could also be a red flag.
Vet sellers by doing a search for their name or business name online with the word "scam" or "review." You can also call AARP’s Fraud Watch Network helpline to report fraud you see or if you've become a victim.
Gift cards and cryptocurrency are also red flags. Keep an eye out for anyone who asks for that type of payment, especially if they need it immediately.