Commentary

September 27, 2013

Tech-savvy consumers be aware of scams related to new iPhones

iPhone-5S
TUCSON, Ariz. – With the release of two new iPhones, Better Business Bureau of Southern Arizona is warning consumers eager to get their hands on the new gadgets to be wary of scammers attempting to take advantage of the iPhone’s popularity.

BBB sees numerous iPhone and iPad related scams continuously throughout every year, but the scams often reach a fever pitch when new models are introduced. The scams tend to take place almost entirely online, where scammers can easily target tech-savvy victims.

The different variations of iPhone scams to especially keep an eye on are as follows:

• Emails claiming you can win a new iPhone 5s or 5c if you enter personal information into an online form. Do you ever wonder where the people who send junk mail, spam email, or even scam letters and scam emails get your contact information? Well, often times it can come from the information you give to dubious contests that pop-up online. Identity theft is another fear- never give-up your Social Security Number, bank account or credit card number, or a driver’s license number to enter a contest online. Legitimate contest do not need that information.

• Posts on Facebook and Twitter urging users to “click on the link” to claim a new iPhone. At worst these links could be phishing scams that are posted by friends who have had their Facebook or Twitter accounts hijacked by scammers. At best it’s an attempt to get access to all the personal information that’s stored on your social media account- later to be sold to spammers and scammers. One thing is for sure: you won’t get a new iPhone if you click on these links.

• Email links and attachments that will load malware onto your computer. Even if the email you receive appears to be coming from a friend or family member, it’s most likely the result of that person having their account hacked and hijacked. Beware of clicking on any links or opening any attachments in these emails, but if you do make sure to run a full virus scan on your computer immediately.

The best way to secure an iPhone is to buy it from the store yourself. The phones are typically in such high demand when they’re first released that there’s just not enough units available even for legitimate organizations to purchase them for contests and sweepstakes.

For more consumer news and tips visit www.tucson.bbb.org, or if you’ve come across an iPhone scam you would like to report, call BBB at (520)888-5353.




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