It’s not uncommon for scammers to target online shoppers, often by pretending to be companies like Amazon. However, these phishing attempts tend to increase during major sales events like Black Friday or Prime Day. These events represent a significant moment for retailers, but unfortunately, also an opportunity for scammers, con artists, and unethical businesses to take advantage of unsuspecting shoppers. It’s essential to be cautious of fake websites, overly enticing social media ads, unsolicited emails or calls, and other suspicious activity during Prime Day and other sales events happening this month.
Fake Amazon Websites
One of the frequent types of scams is fake websites that superficially resemble the original service or store. Beware of “Amazonexal[.]com”, which claims to be a branch of Amazon and offers items at heavily discounted prices. However, it is a fraudulent website and a typical case of scammers imitating Amazon to deceive people.
Also, be wary of websites like “Lainedmn[.]com” that impersonate Amazon to appear legitimate. These sites can compromise your security, and you may not receive any products or services in return. To stay safe, it’s important to remember the following key points:
- Both websites are newly created.
- Both websites use content from amazon.com and the Amazon logo but they do not have any official affiliation with Amazon.
- The owners hide their identity in WHOIS. These sites do not provide directory information.
- None of the sites have reviews and feedback.
- None of the sites have a social media presence besides victims’ complaints online.
- Both websites offer ridiculous discounts that are communicated through hyperbolic language and pictures.
Fraud experts assert that in the past 30 days alone, 2,300 new website domains were registered to impersonate Amazon. This is just the beginning, and the higher the price, the more fake sites will be created.
Here the list of latest fake websites were used in the scam:
Be cautious of fake Amazon websites. Legitimate sites have a dot before
"amazon.com" (e.g., http://”something”.amazon.com). Amazon Pay website is https://pay.amazon.com/. Beware of links to IP addresses (e.g., http://123.456.789.123/amazon.com/).
Amazon Prime Day Scams
Prime Day will take place for two consecutive days this year. Readers may be eager for Prime Day deals, but beware of scammers seeking to profit. In a typical scam, customers receive an email asking them to verify their account, which leads them to a fake Amazon website to enter their personal information.
Experts say most phishing scams targeting Amazon customers rely on their lack of understanding of how the retailer communicates with individuals. Amazon’s Director of Worldwide Buyer Risk Prevention, Scott Knapp, has stated that company representatives are unlikely to contact shoppers directly and ask about order details.
How to recognize fake emails:
- Amazon e-mails related to UK purchases will always come from an address ending in
- If you purchased an item from another international Amazon site, the email address must include the country in which you purchased the item. (For example,
@amazon.esfor orders coming from Spain)
- Amazon will never ask for personal information or passwords by email or text message.
- The retail giant assures customers they will never request payment or offer unexpected refunds over the phone.
Fake Coupons and Promos
Be cautious of emails and ads offering discount codes for significant savings on Prime Day. While genuine Amazon promo codes can be found on trustworthy consumer guide websites, scammers may also take advantage of these deals.
Be cautious of ads and forum posts asking for personal info in exchange for coupons. They may seem harmless, but are actually attempts to collect emails for marketing. In return, you may receive expired or fake codes.
Once you give your email address to a third party, they may compile and sell email databases to marketing vendors. This could lead to your email being added to a list of cybercriminals used for email-based attacks.
How to report a scam
- If you have been scammed, report it to Amazon support through their official website or phone number.
- You should inform your bank as soon as possible. This increases their chances of stopping the fraudster.
- Finally, report the scammers to the platform through which they contacted you.
- If you’re concerned that your Amazon account may be at risk, the seller’s website has tips to help protect your information.
Tips for safe Prime Day shopping
We have some helpful tips to prevent falling victim to scams. It is better to follow them all rather than picking one separate, as there is no universal solution.
- Double-check domain names. If the website address does not start with “Amazon.com,” it could be fraudulent. This applies to other online retailers as well. Look for misspellings, extra punctuation, or anything unusual in the address.
- Stick to Amazon’s official website, app, and stores for purchases. Amazon never asks for payment over the phone/email or through third-party sites.
- It’s safer to enter retailer URLs manually rather than clicking on potentially harmful links. If you receive a suspicious message claiming that you ordered something, check your Amazon account’s “My Orders” section to confirm.
- It’s essential to use a strong password and enable two-factor authentication. Passwords should be extended, unique, and random. Avoid reusing passwords across multiple accounts.
- Treat limited-time Prime Day deals with caution. Offers requiring immediate purchase may be cybercriminal traps.
Scammers don’t take breaks, and with Prime Day around the corner, it’s essential to remain vigilant against fraud. The tips we’ve provided can help safeguard you against online scams.