Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
Here's another thing to worry about this holiday season: According to Senator Charles Schumer, we're all at risk for gift card fraud. Gothamist explains how it works: Scammers use cheap magnetic-strip reading devices to find out the activation numbers on gift-cards sold off the rack. A few days later, they call the phone number on the card to find out if it's been activated, usually with an innocuous question like "How much of a balance do I have left?" Then, they use that money to go shopping.
Schmer is asking for better gift card packaging to help protect consumers, but in the meantime, the best solution might be to just go with an individualized gift. Of course, figuring out where to get such a thing isn't always easy—but that's what our Holiday Shopping Guides are for.
· Schumer Issues Warning On Gift Card Scams [NY1]
· Gift Card Fraud: The Silent Christmas Killer? [Gothamist]
· All Holiday Shopping Guides [Racked NY]