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Cyberscammers take aim at Black Friday, Cyber Monday

'Tis the season for cyberscams — and it's stacking up to be one of unprecedented plunder for cybergrinches. Crooks go where the money is, and cybercriminals are concentrating their cleverness this year on mobile devices and social media. Cybercriminals have begun to flood e-mail, social media postings and search results with tainted web links, offers for worthless products and pitches for all variety of scams. The crooks count on one in 10 recipients of holiday-themed phishing lures to click on a poisoned link, or fill out a bogus form.

Beware of TV bargains on Black Friday

Would it still be Black Friday without the cheap HDTVs? Nearly every major store — including some, like Kohl's, that don't even typically sell TVs — will be offering flat-panel displays at rock-bottom prices this week, all in an attempt to aggressively court bargain hunters. Though the deals may appear enticing (who doesn't want a 32-inch flat-panel for less than $100?), buyers are better off saving their money for a different day. More often than not, the TVs sold on Black Friday are flawed in some major way; given how much time the average American spends watching TV, consumers shouldn't waste their money on Black Friday TV "bargains."

Hotels offer Black Friday/Cyber Monday deals

Consumers can get much more than a discounted flat screen TV or tablet on Black Friday and Cyber Monday. In recent years, hotels have also gotten into the spirit of the shopping frenzy. This year, on Nov. 29 and Dec. 2, tons of hotels throughout the country will be offering up to 50% off room rates, some with an amenity or two thrown in.

Automakers, dealers roll out Black Friday deals

Automakers and their dealers are trying to join in the Black Friday shopping frenzy, saving some of their better deals in hopes of luring shoppers out of malls and big-box stores and into showrooms. General Motors, Ford Motor and Hyundai are among makers hoping to cash in on the traditional holiday shopping kickoff. The big day comes as they are clearing the last of 2013 models. Alec Gutierrez, a Kelley Blue Book senior analyst, says the Black Friday deals will be good, though not quite the "doorbuster" loss leaders other retailers promote. Some of them:

Oddballs get in on the Black Friday action

Savvy sellers of non-traditional holiday services and other stuff are jumping onto the Black Friday gravy train. Everyone wants their cuts of the estimated $60 billion or more that holiday shoppers are expected to spend over the four-day weekend. Among them are mortgage lenders, car washes, cosmetic dentists, and even veterinarians.

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