Gift Card Expiration Date Warning

ABC News' Stephanie Zimmermann reports on some cases where holiday gift cards may expire before then consumers use them.
2:50 | 01/28/17

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Transcript for Gift Card Expiration Date Warning
Welcome back. So some of us, not all of us because I don't love them but a lot found gift cards with our names on them under the tree this season. You don't like gift cars. I find it's a little lazy. See, I think it's pragmatic. Just a gift. You can give them to all of us. Thank you, Tom. The advice from our ABC news fixer this morning is start cashing them in if you haven't done so already, Tom, or you could find yourself holding a piece of worthless plastic. ??? this woman has a whole gift card collection and got this for Bloomingdale's a couple christmases ago. I just put it away in the drawer and forgot all about it. Reporter: When she and her husband finally tried to use it online. The site said not able to redeem the card at this time. Reporter: They tried unsuccessfully to fix it over the phone. I thought if I showed someone the physical card, that it would not be a problem. Reporter: They tried unsuccessfully to fix it over the phone. Finally reaching Bloomingdale's. They said that the card had been archived. We found that kind of frustrating to put it mildly. Reporter: Bloomingdale's had frozen mei mei's card to prevent fraud. Our fixer Stephanie Zimmermann contacted Alan brill who says bad guys love unused gift cards. I look at these cards and I say how can I get the data? Reporter: Scammers steal the information using skimmers and fake scratch-off stickers. See this P.I.N.? Underneath the scratchoff. That's to protect you. If I scratched it off I can put another piece of tape that's a scratch-off. Reporter: They wait until the card has been purchased then, boom, they steal the card's money. The fixer called Bloomingdale's. It's Stephanie Zimmermann from ABC news. Reporter: Letting them know mei mei wasn't a scammer and asked them to unfreeze her card. Bloomingdale's restored her $100 balance. They also threw in an extra $50 discuss for her trouble. An estimated $1 billion in gift cards goes unused each year so Stephanie's biggest piece of advice is -- Use them quickly. Don't let them sit in a drawer where they could get lost or hacked. It's fixed. Thanks, ABC news fixer. The lesson you need to go home and get your gift cards out of drawer, dust them off and use them by the end of the day. Or give them to us. Or why don't you just give them to us? We'll take the billion dollars. A billion dollars lost every year. I lose them too. Watching the piece. If you have a consumer problem for the ABC news fixer find Stephanie at abcnews.com/fixer. She already recovered 1.9 million from frustrated consumers and maybe she'll fix your problem right here on

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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