CHARLESTON — West Virginia Attorney General Patrick Morrisey is cautioning Verizon Wireless subscribers throughout West Virginia about a new scam that targets its victims through text messages that offer a credit of $76 by following a link and providing some account information.
Morrisey said his office has received reports of consumers who have received text messages directing them to the website www.verizon76.com. The message has a few different versions, but generally will tell the consumer that they have earned a $76 rebate or gift.
To claim the rebate, consumers are told to visit the website provided and enter their account information. In some cases, a person will receive a robocall with a message instructing them to do the same.
“As we’ve seen before, scammers always look for new ways to get your personal information, and they tend to piggy back off the name of well-known companies to do so,” Morrisey said in a press release. “Legitimate companies will never send you a text message or a robocall directing you to a website that will ask for your Social Security number or bank account information to claim an offer or prize.”
If you receive one of these fraudulent text messages, here are a few steps to take in order to avoid being scammed:
* Delete the text message immediately, especially if it asks you to reply with personal information.
* Don’t click on any links in the message. The links may take you to authentic-looking sites that are designed to steal your personal information.
* Review your monthly statement carefully for any unauthorized or suspicious charges, and report them to your carrier immediately.
“Scams like this one serve as a good reminder that even if you get a message from a company you know and trust, it’s better to be safe than sorry,” Morrisey said. “A quick phone call to the company can save you a lot of time and money. Unsolicited offers of money or free gifts are almost always too good to be true.”
Those who think they might have been a victim of this scam are asked to call the Attorney General’s Consumer Protection Division at 1-800-368-8808 or file a complaint at www.wvago.gov.