Scammers Target Last-minute Shoppers

Products may be in short supply, but potential thieves are not. Be “scam smart” to keep your holiday happy.

photo of a woman in a santa hat holding a credit card grimaching as she looks at a laptop screen
(Image credit: Getty Images)

It may be the season of goodwill toward all, but Santa has a naughty list for a reason. And this time of year is also a busy and lucrative season for scammers. So while you’re looking for that perfect, last-minute gift, be sure to have your guard up to protect yourself from thieves.

Well-known supply chain problems are creating opportunities for scams this year, said Naomi R. Cahn, director of the Family Law Center at the University of Virginia School of Law.

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Senior Retirement Editor,

Elaine Silvestrini has worked for Kiplinger since 2021, serving as senior retirement editor since 2022. Before that, she had an extensive career as a newspaper and online journalist, primarily covering legal issues at the Tampa Tribune and the Asbury Park Press in New Jersey. In more recent years, she's written for several marketing, legal and financial websites, including and, and the newsletters Auto Insurance Report and Property Insurance Report.