BOSTON (CBS) – We all want to save a little money and the internet provides a plethora of coupons and deals on everything from frozen pizza to designer jeans.  But how do you know you’re getting what you signed up for?

The Better Business Bureau is warning couponers to beware of scams to steal your information online, masked in a way to save you money.

So how can you tell if the coupon you’re about to collect is real?

The BBB says to be wary of any deal that seems too good to be true.

Any site offering more than 10-percent off is most likely a scam. Promotions for $500 gift cards are also nearly always fake, they say.

Once couponers click the scam website, it asks for an email address and phone number and promises your coupon will be sent.

But what is really being sent is your information to other websites and potential scammers.

According to the BBB, this “bait and switch” is a way for businesses to collect contact information and sell it to other companies.

Other sites provide fake coupons to print and coupon users don’t find out they’re fraudulent until they are at the register of the store.

Once your information is sold, you will start receiving spam calls, text messages and emails.

Also, if you have to pony up money for the coupon, it’s probably fake.

To be safe, always check the legal language and expiration dates, the BBB says.

The non-profit Coupon Information Center maintains a list of fraudulent coupons.

If you think you are about to sign up for a fraudulent coupon, check the list first.


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