Ignore that Text…You Didn’t Win a Walmart Gift Card!

Cell phone users across the country are receiving suspicious text messages that claim to be from Walmart. The texts tell consumers they won a free gift card and all they have to do is click a link and enter some information. Unfortunately, there is no gift card. It’s a scam to steal your credit card number and other personal info.

This scam has several versions. In one, the text reads “You just won a free $1000 Walmart Gift Card, enter “1000″ at LINK.” In another, it says: “Walmart $1000 gift card for the first 1000 users to go to LINK and enter code 2938.”  The texts also use different URLs, including:

  • promocenterdaily.com/walmart_gift
  • promocenter.ws/walmart
  • walmartgift.mobi

See a screen shot of a scam message here.

In this instance, the smishing scam is using Walmart’s name and popularity to lure in victims. Smishing is a relatively new twist on an old scam and capitalizes on the explosive growth in smartphones. A smishing scam is a phishing scam that is sent to you via SMS text to your phone, instead of via email to your computer in a regular phishing scam.

If you receive this or similar text messages, contact your cell carrier, as they may provide specific instructions to report SMS spam, block numbers and websites. Never click on the links or provide personal information to claim the “free” product or prize and check your bank statements and credit cards on a regular basis for unauthorized charges.

For more information on this scam, see the statement on Walmart’s website. You can also visit www.bbb.org to learn more about scams targeting consumers and report a scam at Scam Source.

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About Caitlin Driscoll

I have been the Public Relations Director of the Better Business Bureau of Western PA since November 2011.