Con artists are using various forms of social media to target consumers, using a header that says “Such an amazing SURPRISE! Have a chance to win a $250 Walmart Gift Card. 2015 is COMING in WALMART. NEW YEAR promos! Limited time offer, just click on this link to get your gift card” However, according to the official Walmart website, walmart.com – “Gift cards are not being given away through Twitter, Facebook, e-mail or text message. If you receive a notice through one of these channels, it is likely a scam. Do NOT click on any links in these messages.”
Walmart is offering a number of tips to avoid being taken advantage of by those seeking to use the Walmart name illegally.
Signs of Fraud:
- Poor grammar
- Poor spelling
- Outdated logos or branding (e.g. use of Wal-Mart or WAL-MART, instead of Walmart)
- “Fine Print.” If you scroll down on the page, there is often fine print disclosing that the offer is not associated with the brand listed.
- To receive the “free” gift card you are asked to complete several steps and to request that several of yoru friends complete the same steps.
How to protect yourself:
- Don’t open or respond to unsolicited e-mails, Internet pop-up ads, or text messages indicating you’ve won a gift card or asking that you complete a survey. .
- Don’t click on or respond to online ads or Web sites offering free gift cards.
- Remember, if it sounds too good to believe, it is!
- Walmart does not offer gift cards via email or text messages, or for “likes” or sharing on social media sites.
- Walmart will only call or text you with offers if you opt-in to receive such messages.
- Walmart will never ask you to email personal information such as:
o Social security number
o Bank account details
o Credit card numbers
o Other financial information
- Walmart will not make unsolicited calls or send emails asking for such information. However, for fraud prevention purposes, Walmart may ask for you to verify personal information such as address or telephone number, which you have previously provided.
- If you were a victim of fraud via the Internet, you should file a report with your local law enforcement along with the Internet Crime Complaint Center (ICCC). The ICCC is a partnership between the FBI and the National