By Julia Cherry
Beware of this new twist on an old and classic scam! DIRECTV impersonators have been contacting customers offering a reduced monthly rate on bills in addition to receiving premium channels if they paid 5 months up front using Amazon gift cards within 24 hours of the call. If the consumer agrees, a “supervisor” will be put on the line to record and verify the agreement and provide an authorization number to use when calling back in to give the claim code located on the back of the Amazon card.
A representative from AT&T (DIRECTV’s parent company) has confirmed this is a scam and suggest that if customers ever have questions about whether or not a call is legitimate, they need to hang up and call a posted customer care number and confirm it is a real offer. Amazon has also created a Common Gift Card Scams page to alert consumers that these types of scams are occurring and that Amazon.com Gift Cards can only be used on Amazon.com, and should not be used to make payments to other businesses or individuals
Consider the following tips to help you avoid scams involving paying a bill via gift cards:
If you gave someone the code from an Amazon gift card, log into your Amazon account and contact Amazon Customer Service, or call them at 1-888-280-4331. Tell them what happened and ask if they can disable the card. If you hear from someone who wants you to pay with an Amazon gift card, don’t do it and report it to the FTC..