Beware text message phishing for personal information - AmericaNowNews.com

Text message phishing scam

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Everyone loves a free gift card. That's what was promised in a text message received by folks in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, but it turned out to be a phishing scam.

The text message read: "Thank you for contacting Walmart. You will be receiving a $100 gift certificate to Walmart. Please call 877-314-0070."

When you call the number, you're asked to verify your street address, phone number and checking account information for magazines and books that would be mailed to their home.

Our viewer contacted a local Walmart before contacting us to inquire about this gift card offer and discovered that several people had received similar messages and made calls to Walmart about this possible scam.

"My dad was taken advantage of and I don't want anyone else to be taken advantage of. I don't think it's right," said Stephanie Young, who contacted us about the message.

"That's false advertising. That's bait and switch. You think you're getting something no strings attached and then you turn around and who knows your information could be sold for some mailing list," said Kathy Graham with the Better Business Bureau.

We learned the company issuing the messages is called Gulf Coast Readers. It's based in Southwest Florida and sells magazine subscriptions.

Our reporter called to speak to the company about questionable business tactics and the representative who answered the phone refused to put a manager on the line and then hung up.

Better Business Bureau records indicate the company has a C- grade based on complaints about false advertising and misrepresentation.

If you feel you have fallen victim to a scam, report it to the Federal Trade Commission.

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