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How Innocent Questions From Surveys Can Rip You Off


The Latest reports from Cyber Security experts is that Scams are being pushed through Surveys. An Innocent question will be asked but behind it, there are misleading links to things that seem so good to be true.  
Naturally, it doesn’t harm answering a few pseudo-anonymous questions such as “would you visit our shops in person if they were open later?”, or “how often do you browse our website for new products?”

According to Naked Security, they say, many brands ask questions of that sort, and sometimes offer small rewards for people who take the trouble to fill in the survey – $5 off your next purchase, for example, or a free product of modest value with your next order.

However, it is said during the process of filling in those Surveys, at the back of the minds of the Cyber Criminals, there are bigger goals. 
They get you sucked into the unbelievable promise but then suddenly switch things up by suggesting you are one of the lucky few who is going to get a gift that’s much, much more valuable than just a discount code for 5% off your next purchase.

Things to watch out for; 

1. The survey scams will try to represent Brand Names you are familiar with. The cyber crooks try to still brand names that are well known. 
E.g. we can get an email that can easily look like something from the MAK brand.

2. They offer gifts that are close to people’s interests e.g. Health, Skin Care Products. Normally their offers aren’t void of errors, things like dates can be wrong and that can be a sign to look out for.

3. As their dates are wrong, it can also point to the fact that it is a scam because normally their urgency is expressed in advice like “Hurry Up”. 
Then if it is a warehouse, they wouldn’t interest you in things like Skin Scare, so that can be a mismatch already and a clear sign that it is a scam on the go.

4. Pictures can be stolen from legitimate sites and those show us how powerful communication through pictures is, people tend to read less and look more at the pictures.

5. Words like You have been Chosen and today is your “Lucky Day” is the type of pseudo-language the crooks use.

6. The innocent-enough questions can be taken from genuine surveys conducted in the past because the spelling and grammar are better than elsewhere in the scam.

7. The cyber crooks can add text to say “38 visitors” but only “6 rewards left”, presumably to give you a sense of being ahead of the rest of the crowd: This is a common trick – adding a touch of urgency and importance – but it’s also a useful giveaway that you are heading into a scam.

8. Fake reviews are also used to dupe people.

9. The offers can change say from desiring free skincare products to you can win a free iPhone 11 Pro:

10. A phishing attempt to still your password and email is made. We need to remember that when you give other people your email address, it’s so they can send messages to you. 

The sender of an email message needs THEIR OWN email password to do that, not your password

11. Finally, the crooks will try to make you pay a nominal delivery charge – the sort of low, low cost that still makes the phone itself, valued at over $1000, feel “free”

What to do? – Recommended by Naked Security

1. Watch out for obvious tell-tales of fakery. Genuine surveys exist, and you may decide to take part in some of them. But unless everything – and we mean everything – adds up at the start, stay away. Spelling mistakes, wrong dates, and unexpected questions, as in this case, should be all the warning you need. If in doubt, leave it out.

2. Beware of bait-and-switch tricks. Surveys may look genuine at the start because the crooks often copy them from a legitimate brand. But when the “rules of engagement” start to change and the goalposts move, as they did here (250 rewards turned into just six and finally into just one), get off the site as quickly as you can.

3. There is no free iPhone. Or Android, or tablet, or laptop. There just isn’t. Stores don’t hand out $1000 mobile phones in return for you telling them whether you think they should stay open later. They just don’t. Follow your head and not your heart.

4.  Report Compromised Cards immediately. If you get as far entering any banking data into a “pay page” and then realize it’s a scam, call your bank’s fraud reporting number at once. (Look on the back of your actual card so you get the right phone number.)

5. Use an Antivirus(like Bit-Defender) With already in built protection, the Antivirus adds to the security of your computer. They scan downloaded programs and data threats before they get used and by blocking bad or scammy websites before your browser can visit them in the first place.

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