A few of the Amazon email scams
• Your Amazon points are about to expire
• Love Amazon? Tell us about it and we’ll give you $100.00. ID – 233789639-A. Help us improve the Amazon Customer Experience!
• You’re amazon (e points) are expiring this weekend, 23794156
• Extra Amazon Prime Bonus Points are ready for you
• Attn: Your Amazon-$50 Reward-Points Will Soon-Expire! Claim-Here: #650372039019
The list goes on and if you’re the kind who just wants a quick answer, I’ll make this easy. They’re all fakes. Nothing but a scam to steal your identity or download malware to your computer.
Circular logic of the Amazon email scams
If you’re still reading, congrats. This is where things get interesting. Most of these emails want you to fill out a “survey” in exchange for your earned points. The logic of needing to complete a survey to be awarded points I’ve already earned escapes me. If the “points” are mine already, shouldn’t I be able to go to Amazon and spend them?
The problem with that logic is, there is no Amazon rewards program. Unless you want to count Amazon Prime, which is no more of a rewards program than a Costco membership.
Something for nothing
So, if the points aren’t real and Amazon has no rewards program, why does this scam work? And why doesn’t Amazon stop it? The answer to the first question boils down to old-fashioned gullibility. Since the days of the snake-oil salesmen in the 19th Century, people have fallen for these scams. I guess it’s human nature to want to believe we can get something for nothing. Sadly, too many of us forget a basic truth—there ain’t no free lunch.
The answer to the second question is nobody can completely stop these Amazon scam emails. Every time one scammer is shut down, another crops up. You can help report spam to the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center. However, if you haven’t been victimized, don’t expect much to happen.
For those who like to keep their inboxes nice and tidy, the scammers have one final gotcha. Email marketing laws require each marketing email to contain an “opt out” link. An opt out link allows the recipient to remove his/her address from future emails. As a writer, I have to say the very fine print inserted before the opt out links was guaranteed to put any reader to sleep.
“This page will stop all messages from being sent you anymore. Thanks and have a great day”
“No more incoming messages will be delivered. Just tell us and within a few days this will update”
Congratulations to those who guessed those links only serve to confirm your email address. Opting out with these guys will increase spam because they now have a confirmed email address to sell.