The Better Business Bureau (BBB) in Mainland B.C. informed the public to be wary about the circulating COVID-19 related Phishing Scam which involved Starbucks Gift Cards that was reported to them by a concerned consumer.
Through phishing emails, the cybercriminals are dispersing fake coupons in Social Media such as Twitter by informing the public that Starbucks stores will be temporarily closed due to the COVID-19 pandemic to comply with social distancing.
Thus, they are offering a fictitious “$100 Starbucks Gift Cards,” which is accessible through a link that redirects to a phishing form. See the image of the bogus gift card:
In an unlikely event that a potential redirected to a fake Starbucks website with an offering to sign up or purchase several costly goods and services first for them to avail the said Gift card.
The link itself is so vague and does not even seem like a legitimate website of Starbucks, which alone should be a red flag to consumers.
Not only will the victim inadvertently share their personal information to cyber-criminals via a fake page that will ask for their information, but the device used to access the phishing link can be compromised by creating a backdoor to be accessed by them.
These kind of promotional scams often mimic legitimate companies by making the promotional offers look legit in the eyes of their victims by using their official logo and establishing relevance to recent events; and in this instance, the COVID-19 pandemic.
Starbucks confirms that the offer is a complete hoax. Consumers are advised by the BBB to confirm any promotional offers received from email or social media via Starbucks Application or their local stores.
“Think twice before opening unsolicited emails with strange links and attachments.” says Karla Laird, Manager for Community & Public Relations at BBB.
The Better Business Bureau provided some consumers with General tips to avoid these traps.
In times of crisis, protect yourself from COVID-19 but also make sure to be wary about the cybercriminals that capitalize on fear that we all have during these times.
The above statement of the Better Business Bureau is infallibly true. Here at iZOOlogic, we keep these best practices ourselves. On top of that, we spread awareness and tips to large scale industries such as banks, oil and energy industries, and other conglomerates that are targeted by cybercriminals. We offer cybercrime solutions to these industries to help prevent and mitigate the effects of such fraudulent activities.