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Avoid Facebook Gift Card Scams

Scams are hitting Facebook and users should beware.

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    NEWSLETTERS

    The son of Robert F. Kennedy has been charged with harassment and endangering the welfare of a child for allegedly clashing with two nurses who tried to stop him from taking his 2-day-old baby boy from a Westchester maternity unit. Douglas Kennedy and his wife called the charges "absurd" and said the nurses were in the wrong. Jonathan Dienst reports. This story was published Feb. 24, 2012 at 11:31 p.m. (Published Thursday, Apr 26, 2012)

    Beware of Costco, Starbucks and other companies giving away hundreds of dollars in gift cards if you simply share the news on Facebook. Chances are it's a scam, 

    When users try to obtain the free voucher or gift card, they need to click a "Share on Facebook" link which triggers a pop-up and can lead to the scammers asking for personal information such as birth date, address and other details that lead to identity theft, according to InformationWeek. Although the article cited an Australian scam, this country has been hit with Costco, McDonald's and Starbucks scams.
    McAfee's "Top 12 Scams for Christmas" had this to say: 
    Scammers use channels, like Facebook and Twitter, just like email and websites to scam consumers during the holidays. Be careful when liking Fan Pages, clicking on fake alerts from friends’ accounts that have been hacked, taking advantage of raffles, ads and deals that you get from “friends,” or installing suspicious “holiday deal” apps that give your private data away.

     As always, if it sounds too good to be true, it usually is. Remember not to click on any links in messages from people you don’t know, and be leery of shortened URLs. (You can also use a URL expander to see where the link is taking you before you click.)