Be wary of the rip-offs out there

Consumers are faced with many choices and the most important thing for them is to be clear that what they are buying is the right choice.

Consumers are faced with many choices and the most important thing for them is to be clear that what they are buying is the right choice.

The Internet provides access to information, entertainment, financial offers and, in short, countless products and services.

But unless security software is used and kept up to date, consumers can be left vulnerable to fraudsters and identity thieves.

Criminals also use the phone to commit many different types of fraud, including lottery fraud, loan fraud, buying club memberships and credit card scams.

You can also help by saving energy and in turn save money. Consumers can save energy and money -- whether they are buying a new refrigerator or trying to reduce their home heating and cooling bills.

Find out how to save money in almost every room of the home.

It is important to maintain a healthy scepticism.

Consumers can learn how to spot health scams, such as fake cancer cures and bogus weight-loss products.

Report a rip-off. If you are not happy with the service you receive, complain. You are the consumer and deserve better service.

There are consumer bodies you can complain to or ask for assistance.

If you are not satisfied with a product, first contact the seller. If that does not solve your problem, contact the company head office.

If your problem is still unresolved, refer to the index for appropriate organisations that provide assistance. Taking legal action should be the last resort.

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