There has been a shocking number of new scams on Facebook lately. A few weeks ago, we told you about the scam where hackers are stealing user IDs and then targeting their Friends list. We also warned you about fraudulent complaint messages, bogus customer service scams and fake surveys.
But now there's another scam that's taking Facebook by storm, and it has to do with a coupon.
If you've seen a coupon from Publix offering $75 off to celebrate its 90th anniversary, don't click on it. The coupon looks like this:
All-in-all, this coupon looks pretty legitimate - but those with sharp eyes will notice where the enticing "catch" is hidden. The coupon offers $75 off any order of $80 or more. It sounds like a great deal, right? That would mean you could get $80 worth of merchandise for only $5. And you know what they say when something sounds too good to be true - it probably is.
There are other signs that point to this coupon being a scam. The fine print claims that there are only 235 coupons remaining, and the coupon has an expiration date of May 30, which is just around the corner. Both of these elements create a sense of urgency to get people to click without thinking.
There are also other claims made in this coupon that you probably wouldn't catch at first glance. For example, the coupon claims to be celebrating the 90th anniversary of Publix, but when you research it, Publix was actually founded in 1930. With a little math, you'll find that means that Publix hasn't been in business for 90 years yet, though it's getting pretty close. In 2016 the company will reach its 86th anniversary.
The website that the coupon links to is also a fake website with many signs that give it away, including the domain name. The site also asks people to first share the coupon with others on Facebook before entering their own information. Unfortunately, many people discovered the hard way that this coupon was a scam.
To avoid this scam, don't click on the coupon if it happens to show up in your feed. You should also be skeptical of any coupons in your feed, and find coupons directly from the retailers' websites instead.
If you already clicked on the coupon, then you'll need to be extra cautious and be on the lookout for other scams. You could be targeted by phishing scams if you provided your email address, or mail scams if you provided your address. You should also change all of the passwords to your accounts, and monitor your banking statements closely for suspicious activity.
Read this article for more information on steps to take if your accounts have been compromised.