Shopping Credit Points Scam: How It Works
When you do a lot of shopping both in-store & online it's hard to keep track of all those reward point systems, discounts & special offers you've accumulated. Therefore, it's nice when the stores send you reminders that some of your points are about to expire. However, there is an email going around claiming to be from a store in your town updating you on your points there. The problem is, the update and the call to action are nothing but a scam.
The email reads (see pic below):
"This is to update you on your available shopping credits. You have $75 in credits available. Your shopping credits will automatically be applied to your next order*. You are a valued customer for us! We hope to see you again soon."
"Click HERE to cash out your credit!"
"If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us."
"*Please note that if your credits are from a return, they will apply to the entire value of any order you place, including taxes and shipping. If your credits are from a promotion, they will only apply to the value of the products in any order you place. If a transaction has taken place since we checked your account for available credits, the amount listed above may no longer reflect the amount in your account."
The call to action is in the subject of the email, asking you to use the points before the end of this month. This way, scammers create the element of urgency, which gets a lot of people to send their personal information.
Shopping Credit Points Scam: How to Avoid
Look for the red flags. For example, this email comes from a non-existent domain located in the United Kingdom. It might work if you are from there, but the email is going around in the whole continent of North America as well. Also, the "From" header might have you as the sender, just like it happened in our case.
Last but not least, they carefully don't mention which store the points/credit the message is from, counting on you to click on their link which will likely result in a phishing attempt or a virus/malware download. Delete the email if any of these cases apply.
Shopping Credit Points Scam: How To Report
Make your family and friends aware of the Shopping Points Update Scam by sharing it on social media using the buttons provided. You can also officially report the scammers to the Federal Trade Commission using the link below:
How to protect yourself more:
If you want to be the first to find out the most notorious scams every week, feel free to subscribe to the Scam Detector newsletter here. You'll receive periodical emails and we promise not to spam. Last but not least, use the Comments section below to expose other scammers.
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