2018 Bureau of Consumer Protection Holiday Release Package

All of our holiday shopping
and scam news releases, all in one place. 

Each year the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection's (DATCP) Bureau of Consumer Protection spreads out a series of releases on holiday-related issues over the course of November and December.  To better suit the needs of our media partners, this year's releases are all linked to this email and are ready for immediate publication. 

Each release is listed below with a link for review on the DATCP website and a link to download a PDF version.

Charity Scams

For many consumers, the holiday season is not just about giving gifts to friends and family members – it is also a time when they give to charities.  Unfortunately, this goodwill draws out scammers who use high-pressure pitches to gather funds through fake charities.

Read online / Download PDF

Gift Card Shopping and Scams

Gift cards are at the top of many shopping lists this time of the year as they offer convenience, ease of use, and flexibility for shoppers and recipients alike.  But before you load up your cart with these plastic wonders, remember that there are some dos, don'ts, and potential scam traps to consider when it comes to gift cards.

Read online / Download PDF

Holiday Promotions

Holiday promotions have kicked off at retailers throughout Wisconsin and the one-day deals and doorbusters are on their way.  Each of these sales will have its own terms and conditions, including limited item inventories, rebate requirements, and specific promotion dates and times.  How does a shopper keep track of all of the details for these sales?

Read online / Download PDF


Looking to land this year’s hot holiday gifts or spread out the payments for an expensive item?  Layaway may be your best bet.  But remember: layaway programs vary from store to store with different fees and conditions to consider.

Read online / Download PDF

Online Shopping

The number of shoppers using computers and mobile devices to compare items and prices, make purchases, and track shipments increases each year.  While these e-commerce systems continue to evolve with a focus on security, the scammers are also evolving and honing their craft to find new potential scams and exploits.

Read online / Download PDF

Returns / Exchanges

Even the most heartfelt presents sometimes end up back on the store shelves.  Maybe the color was wrong.  Perhaps the fit was not quite right.  There can be any number of reasons why an item needs to be returned, and planning ahead for this possibility can be a great help to a gift recipient.

Read online / Download PDF

Shipping Scams

Online holiday shopping brings a flood of emails to your inbox: purchase confirmations, shipping updates, promotional offers, requests for product reviews, and more.  Amongst these messages, scammers can sneak malware-laden spam emails masked as shipping or delivery alerts.

Read online / Download PDF

Toy Safety

Seeing the excitement on a child's face when they open holiday gifts is one of the joys of the season.  But picking that perfect present goes beyond choosing what is popular, cute, or exciting – the safety of the children in the home needs to be a significant consideration as well.

Read online / Download PDF

For questions or interview requests on these topics or more, please contact:  Jerad Albracht, Senior Communications Specialist, at 608-224-5007 or via email:  jerad.albracht@wisconsin.gov.

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