One of the most common scams: fake websites that promise Super Bowl gear but send you absolutely nothing. While many vendors of phony gear will take to the streets of Indianapolis, more and more are heading online.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement and other federal agencies seized a record $3.56 million worth of fake Super Bowl-related memorabilia during "Operation Interception" around the time of last year's Super Bowl, according to CNN. This year, agents expect another major haul, especially given the extreme popularity of the two teams.
"We'll see numerous counterfeit jerseys, sweatshirts, hats, cell phone covers," Ross Feinstein, a spokesman for ICE, told CNN. "If they can make it, we'll seize it."
Before last year's big game in Arlington, Texas, more than 15,000 counterfeit NFL jerseys were seized in the days before Super Bowl Sunday.
Buying Super Bowl tickets online can be risky business. The Better Business Bureau says websites like StubHub guarantee tickets' authenticity. Another trusted site, Ticketmaster, handles ticket exchanges for the NFL. In the past, Super Bowl ticket scams on Craigslist and eBay have cost sports fans thousands when they learned their tickets were fake.
"What somebody should not do is respond to a Craigslist ad," Jeff Grass, CEO of buysafe, told CNN.
Over the past four Super Bowls combined, the crackdown on contraband has resulted in the seizure of more than 66,000 counterfeit items worth $6.36 million, which is just a fraction of the total value of counterfeit goods sold in this country.