Scammers Pounce on Target’s Fiasco
On Thursday, Target (TGT) announced that 40 million credit and debit card accounts had been compromised by a security breach — but it took less than 24 hours for fraudsters to try to profit from the confusion. With scams coming from all directions, whom can we trust?
Many consumers received an email that seemed to be from Target — in fact the text was identical to the message the retailer posted on its site — but upon closer inspection it appears to be a phishing scam designed to fleece more consumers of their personal information. The hackers sent an email that mimicked Target’s warning to customers about the credit-card breach letting them know what they could do to request a security freeze on their accounts. But while the real Target message contained legitimate links to the credit bureaus’ websites, as well as to the FTC, the links in the scam email, while they look legitimate on the surface, were not.
It’s a trend, experts say, that’s become commonplace: a major event garners the public’s attention, and the scammers swoop in to trick the public.