Online purchase scams lead Better Business Bureau's Top Scams of 2018

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WIFR) -- People from the Rockford region lost nearly half a million dollars to scams in 2018, according to the Better Business Bureau.

Nationally, the BBB says most scams stemmed from online purchases through fake websites. The most common online purchase scams were related to pets, clothing, cosmetics, electronics, and automobiles.

"Online purchase scams are especially detrimental to both consumers and businesses because they open the door to phishing scams and malware attacks and frauds,” said Dennis Horton, director of the Rockford Regional Office of the Better Business Bureau.

According to the BBB Tracker​, these were the Top 10 scams in 2018:

1. Online Purchase (fake websites)
2. Employment (job offer scams)
3. Debt Collections (invoices, calls or emails for fake debts)
4. Tech Support (calls, texts or emails from fake tech support agents)
5. Tax Collection (fake IRS or Treasury Dept. calls/emails)
6. Utility (fake calls/emails claiming your service will be shut off unless you pay)
7. Fake Check/Money Order (scammers send a fake check and convince recipients to send fees or the balance of an “overpayment” back)
8. Counterfeit Product (often tied in with scam websites – consumers are sent cheap counterfeit items worth a fraction of the real item)
9. Phishing (a series of fake spoofed emails requesting money or personal information)
10. Advance Fee Loan (the promise of a “loan” – after you pay fees)