Amazon is a life-saver when it comes to Christmas shopping, but if you fall victim to this scam by sellers on the online marketplace -- they won't help you.

It's 2016, and chances are you're going to do at least some of your holiday shopping on Amazon, and why wouldn't you? It sure beats running to every Walmart in town looking for that exact type of Chinpokomon your young child (or grown-up millennial child) is asking for. But, again, it's 2016. Everything that is good, has also been booby-trapped by the scumbags out there, and if you're not careful -- you could lose an election a lot of money.

This year's scam du jour involves sellers on Amazon asking their customers to send an email before finalizing their purchase. If you encounter this in your travels -- you may want to find a new merchant, because a lot of people who chase that lure end up getting hooked according to MLive. Next, the scammer will send you a few emails, that look official, trying to get you to make your purchase with an Amazon gift card. If you do so, chances are fairly high that you won't be getting anything in return.

Despite the fact that third-party "sellers" are using Amazon's platform and their gift cards to perpetrate the scam, the online retailing giant is remaining relatively silent on the matter. There are some reports that they have been unwilling to take action against the allegedly fraudulent sellers as well. Honestly, it shouldn't have to come to that. Amazon already warns consumers that no legitimate seller will ask you to pay outside of Amazon's pay system. If they do -- you're probably about to get ripped off. 'Tis the season, after all.

We've listed some other tips from Amazon on avoiding scams below:

  • Do not do business with a seller that directs you off Amazon. A legitimate Amazon.com seller transaction will never occur off Amazon. For more information on gift card scams, see Common Gift Card Scams.
  • Do not send money--by cash, wire transfer, Western Union, PayPal, MoneyGram or other means, including by Amazon Payments--to a seller who claims that Amazon or Amazon Payments will guarantee the transaction, refund your funds if you are not satisfied with the purchase, or hold your funds in escrow.
  • Do not make a payment to claim lottery or prize winnings, or on a promise of receiving a large amount of money.
  • Do not make a payment because you are "guaranteed" a credit card or loan.
  • Do not respond to an Internet or phone offer that you aren't sure is honest.
  • Do not make a payment to someone you don't know or whose identity you can't verify.
  • Do not respond to emails that ask you to provide account information, such as your e-mail address and password combination. Amazon will never ask you for personal information.