If a deal sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
We are just one day away from Mother’s Day 2017, and unfortunately, the holiday is off to a fishy start. This week, officials began warning the public to be on the lookout for a new scam circulating on social media. If you’re scrolling on sites like Facebook and see coupons for massive savings at major retailers, be aware. Here are some of the examples of fake coupons being passed around on the interwebs.
As you can see, major retailers like Bed Bath & Beyond, Lowe’s Home Improvement, Macy’s, Kohl’s, and Ross are all being targeted. This comes as no surprise considering these are all stores we’d think to shop at for our moms, right? While the coupons look kind of legit, the captions are an obvious giveaway (at least to us!) But as it turns out, lots of people are falling for these fakes!
The Better Business Bureau has officially declared this a phishing scam. What’s that mean, exactly?
Basically, thieves are trying to steal your personal information online. The biggest tip off is that these coupons are asking shoppers to give out information like their full name, phone numbers, and credit card information. These are all examples of things that authentic coupon ads never ask for! John O’Hara of the BBB explains, “About all they would need is maybe an email address to send it to you, but with coupons online, a lot of times you just print them and take them in the store, or they have a code if you want to use it online.” An estimated $24 billion is to be spent this Mother’s Day, so it’s no wonder that cyber thieves are trying to get in on the action!
How to protect yourself against a social media scam
- Never give out private information for a coupon promotion. (No discount is worth identity theft!)
- If you’re unsure if a coupon is legitimate, reach out to the company directly and ASK. (See below.)
So if you haven’t gotten your mom a Mother’s Day gift yet, just suck it up and pay full price for something special. If there’s anyone that deserves a fancy gift, it’s your mom! Happy Mother’s Day weekend to all the families out there!
Happy Mother’s Day weekend to all the families out there!