VOUCHER SCAM: Supermarkets are giving away vouchers for sharing links.
While for many it’s almost the time of the year for merriment and spending money on Christmas, for some it’s also the season to scam others. This week’s featured scam involves one that seems to rear its head every so often- the old favourite, the one to win a high value supermarket voucher.
There’s several examples of this scam doing the rounds, but the example we’re going to talk you through is one titled “Morrisons has announced that everyone who shares this link will be sent a £50 coupon for it’s anniversary. TODAY ONLY”. It’s worth noting that all voucher scams of this nature feature a very similar way of operating. So, this advice can be taken for all different scams of this nature.
Oh, and it’ll also steal your personal details. Nothing like stolen details for a Merry Christmas, right?
The Start of the Scam
In this image taken from a share on Facebook, the survey declares that all you have to do is share a link to get a voucher. This is incorrect. It’s a voucher scam.
Firstly, take a look at the link above the title- does that look like an official website? It’s not an official site.
Secondly- consider this- what’s in it for a supermarket to give away a voucher for so little as a share of a link? While it’s true some businesses, particularly smaller ones will sometimes offer a prize for sharing or engaging with a post in order to drive engagement or brand recognition, it’s always one or possibly two prizes. It certainly wouldn’t be something so high value for everyone who participates. Imagine 100,000 did that- it would cost them £5 million. Also, a major brand isn’t likely to engage in such posts to drive brand recognition as they’re already well known.
Thirdly- the voucher itself in the picture is fake- one only needs to take a look at the “disclaimer” below the voucher is incorrect. It’s poorly written and the list of exclusions is not representative of a typical shop voucher. That’s because….again- it’s a voucher scam.
Once The Link is Clicked
Once the link is clicked, you’re taken to a page that is a rather clumsy attempt to mimic a Morrisons webpage where you’re asked to complete a few questions.
Firstly, note the poor grammar in the page and ask yourself this: Do you really think a business on the scale of Morrisons would have such a sloppily made and written page?
Secondly- remember the original post? All it said you have to do is share a link to get a voucher- suddenly you’re being asked to do more….
It Doesn’t End There
Once you’ve answered the questions, there’s more things to do! You’ve got to share the post and write “Thanks” in the comment section below. This ensures that the scam is circulated.
Far from just sharing a link, you’re now expected to share some details. So once you’ve clicked the share button and done as they’ve asked- you go forward to submit some details.
Thankfully, we’ve done that so you don’t have to.
A New Prize?
You’re now taken to a website called “National Consumer Center”- which aside from the American words and spelling of “Consumer” and “Center” is a survey scam website. Suddenly, the £50 voucher is now £250!
As the image shows, it doesn’t matter what details you put in- the main intention is to capture your details. The small print at the bottom tells you that your details will be used for third party marketing.
Remember, the original advert claimed that Morrisons were giving away £50 to celebrate their anniversary.
The purpose of this is to get your details from which you will be bombarded with god knows what. You might get an inbox full of links to websites selling counterfeit Viagra. Having your details at the mercy of scammers is a hard pill to swallow. Even worse, you might get “phishing scam” emails, where you get a legitimate looking email (sometimes in broken English) claiming you have to log into your bank because you’ve been frozen out- but in reality, you’re taken to a fake page and your financial details are stolen.
Think of it this way. If they’re unscrupulous enough to trick you into thinking you’re getting a voucher for a simple share, do you really think they’ll be ethical with who they sell your details to?
But Where’s My Voucher?
You’ve done all they’ve asked you to. You’ve clicked the link, shared it and by now you’ve probably had a couple friends tell you it’s a scam while another five have shared it dreaming of what to do with their new found voucher wealth.
But there’s MORE!
You haven’t got the voucher yet. That’s because those behind the voucher scam have to make some extra money and they do that by getting you to click an affiliate link and buy or subscribe to something. Even if you go as far as doing so, you still don’t get your voucher. “National Consumer Center” has been linked to a ton of scams over the years- as this website explains.
Avoid Being Scammed
Some people when you ask them why they’ve fallen for a voucher scam will tell you “shared cos you never know” or “gotta try”….or various nonsense around that. Remember: if it’s too good to be true, it probably is.
In this instance, remember it’s extremely unlikely a company will offer such a large value prize to so many people. Also ask yourself these questions before surrendering your details.
- Is it an official website?
- Is it too good to be true?
- What are going to happen to the details you put in?
Here’s a link to a news article about this scam and others like it.