The Better Business Bureau is warning parents of a new scam connected to streaming local school sports games. With many high schools across the country transitioning to streaming games to make them more accessible during the COVID-19 pandemic, more people are tuning in to watch their kids, grandkids, friends, and family members play.
While this should be a way for friends and family to show their support and team spirit, it also has become a new avenue for scammers. The risks are coming primarily through Twitter, where schools may post links to stream sports games.
Scammers will post fake links to streaming services that will ask people to provide sensitive information – like Social Security numbers and credit card information – to watch the game.
It’s easy for potential victims to start clicking through these fake streaming links, as many of them will tag the names of the schools. However, the links never lead to the games, and consumers are forced to pay before they realize they won’t be able to reach a streaming site. On top of that, any information provided on these sites can be compromised and used for future scams.
How to steer clear of these scams
With back-to-school season underway and the fall sports season kicking off, it’s important for everyone to be vigilant in the face of these scams. The Better Business Bureau urges consumers to be mindful when streaming any games online.
The best way to avoid these scams is to check with your specific school on whether or not the games will be streamed and what the best way is to access the stream. Twitter accounts that have low follower accounts or only post links to streaming sites are also red flags to look out for.
Taking a few extra minutes to research the site before clicking through may be time-consuming, but ultimately worth it to protect consumers’ identities and personal information.
Consumers can monitor active scams and report scams through the Better Business Bureau here.