An interesting little scam has been going around lately that has even shown up in my mailbox this time.
They’re called survey scams and they pose as reputable brands or companies, like Kohl’s, Amazon, etc.
They’ll ask you take a survey posing as this company in return for a (usually) $50 gift card to that company or a prize of your choice.
So like most people would they get excited thinking they get selected for this special survey, go through and answer the typical questions.
“How was your last shopping experience?”
“Are you a member of our rewards program?”
“Do you shop with us often?”
We think we’re doing the company a solid and in return, we get a gift card or a cool prize, sounds innocent enough.
UNTIL, you pick out your special hard earned prize and they say you get this absolutely free and all you need to pay is shipping (usually $5), DON’T DO IT!
Once you pay for the shipping they will (if they don’t end up stealing your information) charge the $5 and then usually a substantial monthly fee the following months.
THIS IS A SCAM, and this is how you can prove it.
FIRST, off you’re going to want to check the fine print under the message and look to see if they claim to have “no affiliation” with the company, but yet they have their name as the company and match their promotional emails all the way down to the color.
For example, here’s one I received for an “Amazon $50 gift card survey”:
SECONDLY, you are going to want to check the send from address to see if it is a domain email affiliated with the company they are clearly posing as but not claiming to be.
Look what turns up when I check the sending address:
Not even an Amazon domain, that’s another HUGE red flag!
When (if) you decide to take the survey you get taken to a “non-affiliated” survey page that looks an awful lot like Amazon.
From here you’ll probably be greeted by an “Amazon employee”:
Which then goes on to ask you some simple questions (like I mentioned in the beginning of the post).
Once you’re done you get to claim your prize which will take you to a selection of “prizes” all for free:
Only one catch, though…
You pay for shipping (which seems harmless) but they fail to mention you’ll be billed $98, $75, etc. a month afterward…or is in very, very, fine print.
LASTLY, once you are done with the survey if you’re taken to another site other than the company you think it is, Amazon, Kohls, etc. DO NOT put your information in.
Wrapping things up…
It’s sad that we can’t even trust our e-mails these days but it’s the way things are.
Stay safe and feel free to look around for more scams to look our or reviews.
If you encountered one of these “Amazon Surveys” that meet the criteria above you can email Amazon at:
Where you can report spoofing emails like this and hopefully put an end to it. (be sure to include an attachment or forward the phishing email so they have something to reference.)
On another note, if you’re looking for something a little more legit then taking surveys for fake prizes you can check out my #1 recommendation for online entrepreneurs, Amazing.com.
They’re a massive entrepreneurial community specializing in a wide range of entrepreneurship from real estate investment, physical product business, advertising, and so much more.
P.S. We have a serious Taco Bell addiction and the affiliate links on our site lets us order off the dollar menu. Thanks for your support!
An ex-broke college student turned online business owner, Tyler is a regular poster on Broke College Solutions. Usually taking a more creative approach to making money while in college he is our go-to guy for making money online.