ARLINGTON, Va. (CBS) – The Better Business Bureau is urging consumers to be alert when considering offers related to Monday’s solar eclipse.
The organization says its scam tracker is picking up reports of fake eclipse glasses and travel cons.
“Scammers are opportunists who take advantage of whatever is going on in the news and in the world,” said BBB spokeswoman Katherine Hutt said in a statement. “The phony and dangerous eclipse glasses are an obvious fraud, but consumers should be prepared for other possible scams as the excitement over the total eclipse escalates this week.
Keeping your eyes protected for eclipse viewing is especially important. WBZ-TV’s Dr. Mallika Marshall reports that you can go blind by looking directly at the eclipse without proper eyewear.
The BBB says many solar glasses being sold online “may be counterfeit or do not meet safety specifications.”
The American Astronomical Society has a list of approved venders here. Some local libraries are handing them out, two pair per family.
The other scams relate to traveling to locations where the sun will be totally eclipsed.
The BBB reports that some people have booked hotels long before the eclipse only to find out their reservation has been canceled or moved. Consumers are also warned to beware of bus scams and fraudsters who set up fake events or charge people for access to free parties.