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RALEIGH, NC (September 27, 2021) – Everyone loves a good deal, including scammers. Scammers often offer discounts that are too good to be true in the hopes that price-conscious consumers will take advantage of these “offers” without doing their research. Recently, BBB Scam Tracker has seen numerous reports of scammers posing as well-known companies and offering discounts, some of which have the COVID-19 theme.
How the scam works:
Receive a text message from a big reputable company. The message states that due to the pandemic, the company would like to help people by offering them an incredible deal. These range from free or discounted services to gift cards and cash.
Consumers reported receiving the following text messages using this tactic:
- “COVID-19 REIMBURSEMENT. VERIZON COMPANY is giving $ 950 to all users of our Verizon service. If so, text your Verizon “
- “Due to the pandemic, Hulu is giving everyone a free 1-year subscription to help them stay home. Get yours here[enlace] .
- “AT&T … Sorry for the coverage issues … Here’s a little gift:[enlace] “
Other texts claim to be Walmart, Amazon, Costco, USPS, and others. Of course, these messages do not actually originate from that company. They come from copycats who hope to steal your personal information. If you click on the link, you may be asked to log into a website similar to the one that scammers use to obtain your username and password. With that information, scammers can access your accounts and even make purchases using your saved payment methods.
While the latest BBB Scam Tracker reports mention Hulu, Netflix, and Verizon, beware of scammers posing as other companies as well. If a name becomes ineffective, they will quickly switch to another company.
How to avoid texting scams:
- Treat messages from unknown senders with caution. If you get a message from a number you don’t recognize, be careful. Many companies are into SMS marketing, but keep in mind that consumers must choose to receive messages. If you haven’t given a business permission to text you, it’s probably a scam.
- Don’t click on strangers’ links. Scammers often send shortened links that don’t allow you to see where they actually lead in the body of your text message. If you click on the link, you could be directed to a dangerous website or could download malware to your device.
- Confirm the agreements directly with the company before accepting. If you really expect the deal to be legitimate, go to the company’s official website and email or call them to ask. The company can inform you if the deal is real or not.
- Install antivirus software on your computer and mobile devices. This type of scam can come from text messages or emails, so make sure all your electronic devices are protected. Antivirus software can scan for malware and alert you before you open a link to a malicious website.
- Alert to the company.
If you have been a victim of this scam or for more information on how to avoid this scam contact Luis Feliz firstname.lastname@example.org or 919-277-4228