There have been multiple Facebook gift card scams recently where users are directed to a website for a free gift card to Starbucks, Outback or Walmart. These are not legitimate contests and may cause serious damage to your computer or attempt to steal your private information.
The scammer will tell you to invite your Facebook friends in order to be eligible for the prize. This is because every time someone visits the website and completes the action (giving up an email, filling out a survey, or downloading a file) they receive a commission. Do not fall for this because you will expose your information and not receive a gift card.
How to Avoid Facebook Gift Card Scams
1.) Look at the URL that the contest is pointing to.
A legitimate contest will point to the actual Outback.com or Starbucks.com. Avoid anything that looks like freeoutbackfor.me or starbucksfreegiftcards.com. This is the easiest way to tell that the contest is not real.
2.) Does the Giveaway Make Sense?
It’s not often that a company will give away anything for free, especially $50 or $100 gift cards. If it seems to good to be true, then it’s probably a scam.
3.) Do research online
A simple google search can usually help to see if a contest is real or not. Make sure you visit the merchant’s website to find out more information.