Today’s Scam of the day comes directly from my own email although I am sure many of you have received the same email. It appears to come from Amazon and looks official. In the email you are offered a $50 gift card merely for completing a survey. Unfortunately, included in these surveys are requests for your Social Security number, passwords, bank account information, credit card numbers and other personal information. People providing this information end up as victims of identity theft. This phony survey phishing scam is not limited to Amazon. Many other company names are used to perpetrate this scam including Kohl’s Costco and Walmart.  Sometimes the scammers use the information you provide to craft personally tailored spear phishing emails to you that are likely to convince you to click on links infected with malware.  In other instances, your phone number is turned over to telemarketers.

As I always say, “trust me, you can’t trust anyone.”  Merely because an email appears to be official and carries a company’s logo does not make the communication legitimate.  It is very easy to copy a logo on to an email and make the communication look official and legitimate when, in fact, it is counterfeit and a scam.  No legitimate survey will ever ask for banking information, passwords, Social Security numbers, credit card information or banking information.  The only reason for asking for that information is to make you a victim of identity theft.  Finally, no company is going to be in a position to give everyone who completes a customer satisfaction survey a $50 gift card.  A legitimate company may enter you into a drawing to win such a card by completing a survey, but no company is giving away $50 gift cards to everyone.

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