my sweet heart asks: At times when you are face booking you come across an email message informing you that you have been awarded a prize lets say by Mercedes Benz company, in the Mercedes Benz promotion and you have to contact the bank where your prize have been deposited. And in the process of claiming your prize the internet fraudsters crops in falsifying the information that you have to pay them some charges for delivery of parcels into your local country. Do you think this is possible?
Hi my sweet heart –
I don’t know any specifics about this particular issue, but I can say that the internet seems to have provided scam artists more opportunities than they’ve ever had before, to do all sorts of shady deals on people.
If it becomes a big deal (which I would think it would be if it were on Facebook,) there’s a site I’m a huge fan of, that is worth checking out. It’s www.snopes.com. It’s a site dedicated to checking out the truth or falsehood of things that get posted online.
The main advice I give to everyone about offers like that is to never, ever, EVER give the people any information that could help them if they’re scamming you. If they say they’ll deposit money into your bank account if you give them the account number, they’re lying. If they say they need to check out your credit card number, they’re lying. If you’re really winning something, they can just send a check to your address!
Now it gets even more complex when it’s on a social networking site, because sometimes what they want is just to get access to all your friends’ pages, which stinks too! Facebook does offer a few words of help about how to avoid some problems, but not nearly enough.
There’s no question that there are absolutely legitimate contests, sweepstakes, raffles, and other giveaways out there. But my advice is to be very cautious whenever someone offers you something for nothing. There’s almost always a catch. Now it could be legitimate – people ask you to send your website address in, so you can be entered in a contest to win something, and they’re very clearly building up their mailing list so they can send you stuff. (Hey, I do that! I wanted your address, and in return I sent you The Pawprint and stuff like that! But I wasn’t sneaky about it!)
So again, I’m not saying to never trust what’s out there. But do be careful. The last thing I want is any of my Pack members being scammed out of money, or into being sent unwanted emails, or having their private information stolen.
You each deserve a big protective dog around you, and I wish I could be that mutt, and make sure you’re all safe! Oh, how I wish I could do that! But since I can’t, you just have to be extra-careful yourself!
Best of luck!