if you receive a message claiming that you've won a big prize, don't trust it
If you or someone you know has recently gotten at text message congratulating you on winning a substantial prize and thought it sounded too good to be true, you were right.
NCCC has received a number of inquiries from concerned consumers regarding text messages they have received claiming they have won gift cards worth $1,000 or more from popular national retailers like Walmart, Target, Best Buy and Apple.
As it turns out, these texts are actually malicious attempts to infect your phone with a virus or malware to steal your personal information. Acting in the same manner as a spam email targeting your computer, these fraudulent text messages are targeting smart phones across the country.
If you receive such an unsolicited text message delete it immediately. Never reply to the text or click on any links that may be included with it. Even if the text claims that you can stop future texts by replying with the word 'stop,' it's all part of the scam.
Most importantly, never give your credit card information, social security number, or bank account information to anyone through a text message, even it is seems like a legitimate source.
If you are registered on the 'Do Not Call' List, any deceptive, unsolicited text messages you receive are in violation of the law and can be reported. Your reports help consumer protection agencies to track and ultimately shut down scammers.