British consumers are warned to take extra care when shopping online as the country expecting a record numbers to log-on for Christmas shopping this year, according to a statement issued by the Home Office on Thursday.
The warning is jointly launched by Action Fraud, the City of London Police and Get Safe Online agencies in a bid to help consumer prevent from online scams.
It said Christmas creates opportunities for retailers and bargain hunters, but also presenting opportunities for fraudsters.
Last year, fraudsters conned consumers out of 12.4 million pounds (about 20 million U.S. dollars) over Christmas through online shopping and auction scams.
The British Action Fraud agency received more than 10,000 reports, with the average loss to victims exceeding 1,700 pounds last year.
Security Minister James Brokenshire called on the public to stay vigilant to "ensure they don't lose their hard-earned money on fakes and frauds."
"We are taking the fight to cyber criminals with the newly created National Cyber Crime Unit, which is part of the National Crime Agency," Brokenshire said.
"Shoppers can find great bargains online ahead of Christmas and this time of year provides a welcome boost to retailers. But shoppers should remember if something looks too good to be true it often is."
Action Fraud experts say even the most confident online shopper can be caught out by professional fraudsters. But fraudsters often target vulnerable shoppers who are unsure in using modern technology.
Consumers are suggest to look out for the warning signs that a website may not be secure.
The statement said Action Fraud, Get Safe Online and the City of London Police, which run the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau, encourage online shoppers to be especially careful when using new websites and sites that offer deals that look too good to be true.
Based on analysis from last year, the most risk online goods from fraud were smartphones, which is followed by other electronic goods such as computers, tablets, laptops, games consoles and e-readers. (1 pound = 1.63 U.S. dollars)