NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Retailers are hoping this year’s holiday spending spree will continue with Cyber Monday.
Online shoppers are expected to spend as much as $1.2 billion on Cyber Monday deals.
1010 WINS’ Juliet Papa reports
A survey by Shop.org found that most retailers believe their online holiday sales will increase at leave 15 percent over last year.
EXTRA: Holiday Shopping Online
The National Retail Federation said the average consumer plans to do about 36 percent of his or her shopping online.
But some experts say this year is different.
“Cyber Monday traditionally has been an important holiday for online retail,” said retail expert Marshal Cohen. “This year all the rules have changed as the retailer opened earlier to compete with online, online opened their deals earlier.”
Shoppers can find many deals today including a Kindle DX for $259 — down from $379 – from Amazon and 50 percent off women’s coats from Macy’s.
Experts are warning online shoppers to beware of hackers who work overtime on days such as Cyber Monday.
“Fortunately, online shopping is generally safe — your credit card is more vulnerable to being hacked by a shady waiter than an online purchase,” said Dan Ackerman, senior editor at CNet.
He suggests keeping an extra close eye on your credit card online statement for the next month to make sure you’re only getting charged for things you buy.
If you plan on shopping on a site like eBay, Ackerman said common sense is your best weapon to avoid getting scammed.
“Look for anything out of the ordinary, and check the seller’s feedback rating,” he said.
Consumers are also being advised to look out for “phishing” scams.
“You may get an email purporting to be from PayPal, eBay, your bank, your credit card company… asking you to click on a link to log in and confirm or change your account information,” Ackerman said. “These realistic-looking emails are a front for scam websites that look like your financial institution’s website, and designed to trick you into typing in your username and password.”
Shoppers are also urged to check and understand the return policy especially for large items such as flat-screen televisions.
“This is especially important for online shopping, where you may not have a physical store to go back to,” he said.
WCBS 880 Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs: Cyber Monday Not Great For All
For the small shopkeeper, terms like Black Friday and Cyber Monday are akin to shouting fire in a crowded theater, especially the internet says Paul McDermott of Marie’s Toy Store in Huntington.
“The world has changed. The internet is powerful. It is a beast,” said McDermott.
He says it’s a best he can’t compete against.
He plans to close his village store after the holidays.
In the meantime, Cow Over The Moon toy store owner Joel Benett echoes McDermott’s comments, but he holds out hope.
“I’m hoping for a good year. I think that if you’re in business, and you’re still in business, that’s a good year,” he told WCBS 880 Long Island Bureau Chief Mike Xirinachs.
WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau: You Might Still Owe Sales Tax
Online shoppers in Connecticut won’t be charged a state sales tax when they shop at amazon.com, one of several online companies based out of state that are waiting for a national taxation policy before going after individual buyers.
Connecticut tax commissioner Kevin Sullivan says buyers need to be aware that they are ultimately responsible for paying the 6.35 state tax on their Connecticut income tax forms in April.
“When I buy something on the internet and the company does not charge sales tax, I’m still responsible to the state of Connecticut for paying that sales tax,” he told WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau.
Sullivan says while consumers won’t be tracked down, their returns will be checked for the tax should they be called in, for example, for a general audit.
It’s estimated that Connecticut is losing about $10 million a year in tax revenue because of lax enforcement.
What’s the best deal you found today? Let us know below…