Bargain hunters in Lichfield and Burntwood warned of scams and fakes in online sales

Bargain hunters are being warned not to get ripped off in online sales.

People across Lichfield and Burntwood will be on the hunt for a deal as retailers prepare for the Boxing Day sales.

But Staffordshire County Council’s Cabinet member for trading standards, Gill Heath, has warned people that counterfeit goods sales online and scam websites are on the rise.

“Most of us shop online now as it’s quick and convenient,” Cllr Heath said. “There will have been a surge of online shopping in the last few weeks and more in coming weeks as people search for New Year bargains.

“It is a priority of the county council to protect residents and businesses and so we just want people to be vigilant when they shop online. Internet shoppers are increasingly being targeted by criminals.”

Among the items designed to lure in unwitting buyers are clothes, perfumes, toys and electrical goods, with some rogue sites using a web address that wrongly suggests they are based in the UK.

Cllr Heath added: “Counterfeit goods are not only substandard – they harm legitimate business and their sale will probably be helping to fund organised crime.”

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