Media contact: Janet C. Hart, APR, CFEE (704) 927-8617 office
Text Messages Offer ‘Free’ Walmart Or Best Buy Gift Card
CHARLOTTE, N.C. – Have you received a text message offering you a free Walmart or Best Buy gift card?
The BBB has a warning that these gift card text messages are a smishing scam.
One text message says - “Walmart $1000 gift card for the first 1000 users to go to link removed and enter code 2938.”
The other text message says - "You have been randomly selected for a Best Buy gift. Get your $1000 gift card right now at link removed."
Smishing is a relatively new twist on an old scam that capitalizes on the explosive growth in smartphones.
A smishing scam is a phishing scam that is sent to you via SMS text to your phone, instead of via email to your computer.
"This smishing scam is using popular retailers' names and popularity to lure in victims," said BBB President Tom Bartholomy.
“If you click on the link in the text message to sign-up for the free gift card, you will be asked for personal information that could be used to steal your identity."
Walmart has posted an alert on their website about the gift card scam.
Screen shot of Best Buy text message
If you receive similar texts or emails, the BBB has this advice:
Discuss smishing scams with all members of your family who have cell phones, from the youngest to the oldest.
Do not click on links in text messages or emails offering prizes or ‘free’ products or trial offers.
Delete any texts or emails that claim you have won a prize or are eligible for a free product.
Do not provide personal information to claim ‘prizes’ or to sign up for free trials.
Never give your credit card number, social security number or bank account information to pay for fees, taxes, or shipping costs for anything that you may have ‘won’ or are getting for ‘free’.
Check your bank statements and credit cards on a regular basis for unauthorized charges.
Check your family’s credit reports with all three credit bureaus annually for any unauthorized credit accounts that have been opened using your social security numbers. You can get a free credit report at www.annualcreditreport.com
For more information about protecting your identity, please visit www.bbb.org.