(WHNT) - We would all like a little extra money back after we pay all those monthly bills, right? Recently automated calls, texts, and emails have been going out to Verizon Wireless customers promising them just that.
If it sounds too good to be true, that’s because it is.
To tell the difference between the real Verizon Wireless website and the con-artist's duplicate, you might have to take a closer look. The sign-in box tells you to "claim your reward." And the URL? It isn't verizonwireless.com.
It's an ongoing issue, the use of technology to take advantage of us. We have to remind ourselves just because it looks authentic doesn't necessarily mean it is.
Michele Mason is the executive director of the Better Business Bureau of North Alabama.
Mason says 35reward.com and vzw153.com have been just two of the phishing sites used to gain access to your account information.
Visiting the site alone might be what they're trying to lure you to do. If you go to a site you're not familiar with, it could be a virus or spyware that downloads onto your phone or computer.
She says it's a tactic employed by scammers everywhere, not just with Verizon Wireless customers.
“We know that the goal is to steal money,” said Sheryl Sellaway, a spokeswoman for Verizon Wireless.
Sellaway says they are aware of these types of scams and are actively working to shut down the impostor sites.
“What we try to do is stay ahead of the bad guys we do a lot of work from a company standpoint to shut down that activity,” said Verizon Wireless spokeswoman Sheryl R. Sellaway.
But they need customers’ help. Here are a few tips:
- Look carefully at email addresses and website URL's. Legitimate emails from Verizon Wireless will only come from verizonwireless.com, vzw.com, or email@example.com.
- If you do visit a suspicious website, immediately change your password.
- If you entered financial information, notify your bank immediately.
- Report scam emails and fake websites to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Alternately, you can dial 611 on your Verizon Wireless mobile device for questions and assistance.
- Report any suspicious calls to the Better Business Bureau at (256) 850-0719 or toll free at (866)-94-BBB19
- Be sure to share this story with your friends and followers on Facebook and Twitter so they don't fall prey to this scam!
The Better Business Bureau of North Alabama also offers resources to keep you aware of the latest scams targeting email, phone, or even snail mail.