What is The “Amazon Winner of The Day” Scam & How to Avoid it
Amazon winner of the day (also known as Amazon winner of today) scams have started to crop up in recent years, especially around Amazon Prime Day.
Usually, these scams are disguised as sweepstakes, promising free prizes like iPhones or MacBooks. But their real purpose is to steal sensitive information such as credit card information, addresses, login credentials, and other private data.
Once the cybercriminals have these details, they can use them to steal your money, hack your accounts, or sell your information on the dark web.
Below, we’ll go over what to look out for, what to do if you’ve been targeted by this scam, and how to act if you’ve already fallen for one.
Is Amazon Winner of the day a scam?
Have you received a text or email saying that you’re the “lucky Amazon winner of the day” or “Amazon Prime Day sweepstakes winner” with the promise of valuable, in-demand electronics or gift card prizes too enticing to pass up? Unfortunately, this is a scam.
These scams mostly target Amazon customers. The goal is to gain access to your private data, either through a survey or by leading you to a website infected with malicious software where they ask for your Amazon login details.
How to spot Amazon scams
Scams like the Amazon winner of the day are usually easy to spot if you know what to look for. But sometimes they can look convincing to the untrained eye.
The first thing you should remember is that Amazon representatives will never text or email you about “winnings,” especially if you have not enrolled in any promotions or sweepstakes.
Here’s how a typical winner of the day scam might go:
You will receive a text or an email with the title “Congratulations Dear Amazon User. . .” The message will tell you that you’ve won an iPhone, a Samsung Galaxy Tab, or an all expenses paid trip. You simply need to click the link to claim it.
The link will lead users to a phishing website that looks exactly like a legit Amazon page. If you follow it, you will be prompted to take a survey or enter your Amazon login credentials to claim the prize.
This is exactly how they get you. Once you enter login credentials on the scammer’s website, they have them.
Here are some other tell-tale signs that you’re dealing with a scammer:
- Unknown sender. Do not trust any text message or email from an unknown or unfamiliar sender.
- Amazing prizes. Beware of messages titled “Win big” claiming you’ve won raffles or contests you haven’t entered.
- Suspicious links. Never trust spontaneous notifications containing links that may even appear legit at first glance. Check the URL by hovering over the provided link. A legitimate Amazon site link will always start with https://www.amazon.com/…
- Spelling mistakes. E-commerce giants like Amazon will not allow spelling and grammatical mistakes on their pages or promotions.
- Sense of urgency. Scammers don’t want to give you time to think. They will often use a running countdown to apply pressure.
- Unprofessional website. Stay clear of any website that looks inconsistent e.g. mismatched font styles, sizes, or colors on the site or an uneven, misaligned layout.
What to do if you’ve been targeted by an Amazon winner of the day scam
The first thing to do when receiving a notification with an enticing offer that seems too good to be true is to verify if it’s legit.
Remember, Amazon will never reach out to you with such a message outside their platform. A good way to ensure you are not being scammed is to check your inbox on the Amazon website or app. If there is nothing there, you are being scammed. You can also check these useful tips from Amazon directly.
Don’t click on any links without verifying their legitimacy first. Amazon recommends reaching out to Amazon customer service from their website and reporting the phishing attempt so that it may be investigated further.
These scammers get their information from third-party data brokers, among other websites. To keep yourself safe we recommend removing your personal information from the internet. Feel free to check out our guide dedicated to this topic.
What to do if you fell victim to an Amazon winner of the day scam
If you’ve made the mistake of clicking on a fake link and, as a result, exposed your sensitive data to scammers, here are a few things you should do next:
Upgrade your security
First and foremost, change your Amazon password and enable two-factor authentication. This will ensure that nobody can log in to your Amazon account with the compromised credentials.
Make sure also to change your email and, most importantly, your banking passwords.
More security tips to consider:
- Use a VPN to ensure your privacy and security while browsing.
- Use an antivirus to protect your machine from malicious software.
- Reduce your digital footprint to ensure your data is not vulnerable and circulating the web. This can be done by using a data removal service.
Block the scammer
Don’t engage with the scammers under any circumstance. This will only pull you further into their net and expose you to more harm. Instead, take down their information (phone number, email) and any details you may have provided them and block the scammer immediately.
File police, FTC, and BBB reports
Next, you’ll want to report the scammers to:
- The police. Reach out to your local authorities and provide all the relevant information you collected to aid in the investigation.
- The Better Business Bureau. File a complaint to the BBB to make it harder for scams like these to operate. You can submit a complaint here.
- The Federal Trade Commission. The FTC can bring a lawsuit against the criminals and help the government identify the patterns associated with Amazon scams to prevent future crimes. Report the scam to the FTC here or by phone at 1-877-382-4357.
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