Scam Alert: Protect your wallet this holiday season

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ANCHORAGE (KTUU) Retail workers aren't the only ones putting long hours to gain your hard-earned money this holiday season -- scammers are working for it too. With fake retail apps and gift card schemes, here are a few tips from the BBB's Michelle Tabler to keep your money in your wallet, and going to legitimate businesses and charities, this season.

Fake Retail Apps:
Dishonest developers are creating fake retail apps, and they're getting through screenings and into app stores for iPhones and Androids. Some of the apps will take your personal information, others will try to get you to log in through social media, stealing your data that way, and even others will infect your device with malware, sometimes asking for a ransom.

Avoid this by going directly to retailers' websites. Don't click on links you get in unsolicited emails.

Gift Cards:
When buying gift cards at a kiosk, check to make sure nothing on the back of the card has been tampered with, like the scratch-off sticker.

When sending gift cards bought at a store, make sure to send the gift receipt with activation information.

Charitable giving:
Always do your research before donating. with the BBB has information on the legitimacy of charities. And don't give money over the phone or through unsolicited email.