Scam Watch - the Amazon scam

Published by Rebecca Rutt on 31 January 2012.
Last updated on 17 June 2014

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Several readers have alerted us to a scam email in circulation purporting to be from Amazon.

These phishing emails are set out to look like a receipt from the company and titled "Your order from Amazon". They look genuine and will typically include the customer's contact details along with the company's website and logo and details of a recent purchase. This is usually for an expensive product and will direct the customer to the Amazon website via a link in the email to apply for a refund.

But because it's a scam email this is not the official company website but a cloned site managed by a scam artist and created to trick people into giving away personal details. Once you've entered your details you are arming someone else with the information needed to potentially empty your bank account or steal your identity.

If you receive a suspect email you should get in contact with Amazon, through the company's official website, and it will be able to investigate this and change your password if necessary.

As with all scam emails, Amazon says it will never ask for personal or financial details via email and says you should never respond to any email messages which ask for these details or open any links within an email like this.

If you receive a suspect email you can forward this to stop-spoofing@amazon.com to be investigated. Once you've sent this on you should mark it as spam in your email inbox and delete it.

Phishing scams

"Latest statistics indicate that around one in every 448 emails is phishing spam designed to trick you into sharing you personal details, either by taking you to a clone website or by downloading malicious code to your computer or smartphone.

Whatever follows is likely to cause you a major headache," says James Jones, spokesperson for Experian.

"The fraudsters' main weapon is consumer apathy, so our best defence is vigilance. It's an over-used saying but, in this day and age, it really is better to be safe than sorry," he adds.

If you think you've been scammed get in touch by leaving a comment below or emailing us on scamwatch@moneywise.co.uk and let us know exactly what has happened.

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