Fake JCPenney gift cards circulating
Whilst our company is Australian, we do have a large number of overseas clients and readers. The latest gift voucher scam involves a retailer that has a limited presence in Australia. The scam gift cards purport to be from JCPenney. JCPenney (for those who don’t know) is a department store chain operating in the US.
The gift voucher links to a site that requests further personal information. Whilst it does not attempt to steal your bank account details (as far as we could ascertain) it does take other personal details. This is most likely an attempt at either creating further spam or identity theft (or both). JCPenney have an excellent page devoted to detection of scam emails.
Figure A shows the email. One point to note is the date; the criminals seem to have got the month wrong. The email sender is “JCPenney”, but the email domain is not a JCPenney domain. The subject of the email is “JCPenney.com order ready to be shipped”. The email states that you can pick up a $1000 gift voucher. You need to click on one of the four links in the email to redeem your voucher. The email’s four links all point to the same site.
Gift card scams are a common way for criminals to gain access to a victim’s personal details. Sometimes the victim’s bank account details are also stolen. If there is a gift voucher on the website, it is worthless. Other sites may request you to download software. The software is usually some form of malware. This email dangles the possibility of a $1000 gift card as bait.
The big flag that this email is false are the domains attached to the links. If you check the links in the email, you will see that they lead to a website that is not the official JCPenney website. Delete this email.