Our friends at Norfolk Trading Standards are warning people to watch out for the Amazon ‘brushing’ scam which involves people receiving packages from the retail giant which they had not ordered.
Photo courtesy of Dan Dennis on Unsplash.com
The practice is being adopted by scammers who want to make the purchase look genuine and avoid violating Amazon’s terms and conditions for reviewing their own products.
The scammers set up numerous fake accounts to buy their own products and then give themselves glowing reviews because the more reviews a product has, the more likely people are to buy the goods.
Victims are not charged for the items which suggests it is more profitable for the scammers to give away their products at the start as they will soon turn a profit thanks to their own (fake) reviews.
But being involved in a brushing scam is not a good thing, despite the free goods that turn up at your door. It means that someone has gained access to your name, address and potentially other personal information. Depending on how they accessed your information they could hold a lot more of your personal information than you realise.
People who receive packages they did not order should contact Amazon and change their online account passwords.
Remember you can check whether your e-mail or telephone number have been subject to a data breach by visiting www.haveibeenpwned.com
If a breach is revealed you should change your password for the account that has been breached. More advice about what to do and your consumer rights can be found in this article from Which?
For advice about scams contact the Citizens Advice Consumer Helpline on 0808 223 1133.