Family pet Safety & How to Avoid Online Dog Scams During COVID-19
Written by Richard Ginsburg Alert 360 CEO & President
At Alert 360, we are a large family of animal lovers. Many of our workers have beloved pets, and we motivate those pets at company occasions, such as our annual (pre-COVID-19) organization picnic. Needless to say, pets have an unique place in the heart of the Alert 360 home security team.
The safety of our customers’ pets is just as crucial to us as the security of their family members, homes and properties. In line with this particular, we strive to raise awareness about online scams that threaten your own bank accounts, finances, or personal identification. Unfortunately, online scams involving household pets have been on the rise during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Beware Online Pet Scams
As a leading home security firm, we talk a lot at about the prolific problem of door-to-door security sales scams. (If you have been the victim of or approached by someone using fraudulent door-to-door home security scam ) Whilst home security sales scams are still an issue, lately another type of scam has popped up on our radar – on the web pet scams.
During the COVID-19 pandemic and related remoteness, the demand for pet friendship has increased. Related to this, recent media reports have shared an increase within online pet scams. Because a lot of pet stores and animal shelters are temporarily closed, consumers are turning to the internet and, sometimes, those results are already disappointing. The Wall Street Journal recently dubbed puppies “ This Year’s Big Online Scam . ”
Include Pet Safety in Home Security
It is unfortunate to read about consumers looking to get a pet, who then fall for one of these scams. These scams include pictures of puppies, provided on websites, that are not truly available for purchase. Many of these websites are professionally designed and have what look like actual customer references.
Pet con artists have had a few years to perfect their unlawful activity. A Better Business Bureau (BBB) study approximated that at least 80 percent of sponsored search links for family pet sales may be fraudulent, advertising pets the supposed sellers don’t own. According to the BBB, these scams usually increase during the holidays and have spiked during the coronavirus outbreak.
So , how do you avoid dropping for one of these online puppy frauds? The Federal Trade Commission, AARP, the BBB, and many Attorney Generals have posted red flags to look out for whenever buying a pet. They also offer helpful assistance when shopping online for a furry or feathered friend. Check out the above-mentioned agencies for more information and keep these tips in mind:
• Try to work with a local pet shelter or rescue league, which makes it simpler to confirm references and possibly visit personally. Plus, you’ll be rescuing an animal in need of a second chance and an adoring home.
• If it is too good to be true, it probably is. Do some research on the price of an animal in advance. If the price seems unusually low, buyer beware. That could be the particular sign of a scam.
• Do a Google search of the animal’s image. Check if you notice the same image on multiple sites, unrelated towards the seller or varying in the details. The same image posted in various, unrelated sites is a huge red flag.
• Pay by credit card – generally. If a seller insists on a wire transfer or even worse, a gift cards, that is another red flag. Using your bank card will give you a fair amount of buyer protection from your credit card company.
• Beware if you ask to see the family pet in person and the buyer gives reasons not to meet.
• Check references for the seller through your local Better Business Bureau.
Once you bring a new pet home, you’ll want to ensure you keep it safe and secure. The following are ways the Alert 360 home security group can help.
Use Security Cameras to Keep an Eye on Pets
Theft of animals and lost pets are two other issues that impact our furry friends. The same way you increase your home’s security by being aware and ready, you can easily increase your pet’s security. Make sure that your pets have tags that include your current contact information. Has your pet microchipped and registered? Keep a closer eye on your pet when it is outside and ensure you have a secure, gated area for it. Many Alert 360 customers use outdoor security cameras to maintain an eye on their yards. This makes it easier to see what’s happening, making use of our home security app, whether you are away or busy inside your home. Our security video cameras , with two-way communications, also allow you to talk to someone who approaches your yard or even pets.
You also can set notifications to alert a person if your pet accesses a delicate or off-limits area while you’re away. This can help keep your pet and belongings safe.
Protect your Pets along with Home Security Decals
Whether you have a new furry member of the family or a longtime family pet, remember, Alert 360 can help keep them safe in your own home. In addition to smoke detectors and video security cameras, Alert 360 offers pet stationary clings to help save pets throughout an emergency. (Alert 360 customers can request decals here. ) Just place these “In Case of Fire” decals in your windows in order to alert emergency responders that you have house animals in your home.
Free Home Security Evaluations Available
Alert 360 provides free home security evaluations to help recognize ways to increase your home, family’s – and pet’s – security. A tuned home security professional will perform a walk-thru inside and outside your home to check on for vulnerable areas. From a basic home security system to a comprehensive program, including smart home automation, Notify 360 has the latest security products. With offices coast-to-coast, chances are we are in your neighborhood. Find a local Notify 360 home security team near you by going to Alert360. com or our home security near me .