WARNING: Unhappy Meals for Facebook Users Clicking Links to $250 McDonald’s Gift Cards

By David Cohen 

McDonaldsScam650Facebook users who click on links promising them $250 gift cards to McDonald’s are becoming victims of The Hamburglar, in the form of online scammers.

Hoax-Slayer reported that the fast-food giant is the latest merchant to be dangled as bait in a gift-card scam, adding that while the scammers may end up with users’ personal information, and the messages may be spammed to those users’ friends, the only meal those users will receive is a serving of humble pie.

The hoax messages promise users $250 McDonald’s gift cards, either specifying the number of cards supposedly left, or claiming that it is a limited-time offer, Hoax-Slayer reported, detailing the scam as follows:

If you did click the link in the scam message, you would be taken to a fake Facebook page and instructed to first share the promotion on your Facebook feed and then copy and paste a version of the message to five different Facebook groups.

But even after you carry out these instructions — thereby spamming your friends and groups with the same fake offer — you will still not get to claim your promised gift card.

Instead, you will be informed that, before getting your gift card, you must participate in one or more surveys as a condition of entry. You will be presented with a pop-up window with links to several available surveys.

But no amount of survey participating will ever get you the promised gift card, which never existed.

Meanwhile, you may have been tricked into parting with your mobile phone number, email address, home address and other personal details, supposedly so that you can go in the draw for various prizes. The information will be used to subscribe you to expensive SMS services and inundate you with unwanted phone calls, emails and junk mail.

The scammer who created the bogus gift-card promotion will earn an affiliate commission each and every time that you and your friends participate in a survey and provide personal information.

Some versions of the scam may also try to trick you into installing rogue Facebook applications or downloading malicious plugins.

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