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October 06, 2014

Worthless Rewards Spam Piling Up

I wrote the other day about spam flogging phony retail rewards programs. They seem to breeding like fruit flies. I haven't been keeping a comprehensive log of the retail brands being fraudulently used to trick recipients into taking surveys and participating in all kinds of worthless promotions that never result in getting any rewards.

Here are the brands I remember:

  • Costco
  • CVS Pharmacy
  • Home Depot (high-volume spam on this one
  • Kohl's
  • RiteAid
  • Victoria's Secret
  • Walgreens

In the past, participants who fall for these promotions have had to follow a tortuous trail of site visits, surveys, software installations (always a big signal flare of no-goodness), surrendering personal information, and ratting out your contact list friends and family members. The tactics were profitable for the crooks in the past, so you can be sure they're still at it.

Although there actually are free lunches on the Internet (some fine advertising-free web browsers, for instance), a $50 or $100 gift card offer sent to millions of email users isn't one of them. Save yourself a lot of anguish, and, more importantly, prevent the spammers from making even a fraction of a cent from you. Don't follow the links, and delete the messages.

Posted on October 06, 2014 at 04:18 PM