SCAM ALERT | $100 coupon is really just potential for $100 headache


    CBS21

    If you're a savvy shopper always looking for a deal beware of this "steal" of a coupon popping up on Facebook feeds across the country!

    The coupon is says it is a $100 coupon, but it's really just the potential for a $100 headache.

    I know what you're saying -- "But it looks so real!"

    Here's the simple trick that immediately lets you know it's a fraud in disguise. Just check the URL.

    Often times the URL linked in the post will contain the company name along with a string of letters/numbers and lead to a site other than the company's official page. Real coupons will always be linked to the company's official website.

    In this case, the link at the bottom says "www.rossstores.com-everyone.us." For reference, the company's official website is www.rossstores.com. (sans -everyone.us).

    We know -- It's close, but no cigar.

    Posts about the fake freebies take over social media feeds so often the Better Business Bureau devoted an entire section warning about the claims.

    Here's what they say:

    Don't believe what you see. It's easy to steal the colors, logos and header of an established organization. Scammers can also make links look like they lead to legitimate websites and emails appear to come from a different sender.
    Legitimate businesses do not ask for credit card numbers or banking information on customer surveys. If they do ask for personal information, like an address or email, be sure there's a link to their privacy policy.
    When in doubt, do a quick web search. If the survey is a scam, you may find alerts or complaints from other consumers. The organization's real website may have further information.
    Watch out for a reward that's too good to be true. If the survey is real, you may be entered in a drawing to win a gift card or receive a small discount off your next purchase. Few businesses can afford to give away $50 gift cards for completing a few questions.

    So, now that you know these tricks, refrain from hitting the "share" button. It may seem like you're spreading the wealth, but really you could be opening up yourself and friends to the possibility of viruses or ransomware.

    If you're still looking for a gift for your million-dollar gal and are hard pressed for cash, trying something priceless -- A gift from the heart.

    But while we're on the topic .... These coupons/posts are scams, as well. If you're going to share anything, share the knowledge!

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