Tesco customers offered FREE Samsung 4K TVs, but you shouldn’t accept this ultimate offer

If you’re browsing social media and see a post that purports to be from Tesco about 500 4K Smart TVs being dished out to customers for free, don’t click on the included link. The post is an elaborate new scam that tries to steal sensitive information. The post is being shared by a Facebook page with more than 20,000 likes which is leveraging the official Tesco branding and company logos to trick users into believing the giveaway is real.

The scam artists have named the fraudulent Facebook page “Tesco UK”. Tesco does have a Facebook page, but it’s called “Tesco” and, at the time of writing, has more than 2.6million likes. It also has a blue tick to verify that it’s a genuine account.

Cleverly, the fraudulent post is conceived to push Facebook users into sharing onto their timelines – spreading the scam and increasing the chance that other Facebook users will stumble onto the scam and fall for the ploy.

The post states: “We have around 500 TV’s in our warehouse that are about to be binned as they have slight damage and can’t be sold. However, all of them are in fully working condition, we thought instead of binning them we’d give them away free to 500 people who have shared and commented on this post by July 18th.”

Alongside the post, the con artists have shared images allegedly from inside a Tesco warehouse where a pile of boxes for Samsung 55-inch Ultra HD 4K Smart TVs can be seen. These TVs can be worth around £500, so it’s certainly tempting to take part in the ‘giveaway’.

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Unfortunately, there’s no free television for anyone who shares the post. Those unsuspecting Facebook users who shared the fraudulent post inadvertently spread the scam and then receive an email with the same Tesco branding and instructions to “claim the prize”.

The email reads: “Hey [Victim’s name]! Thank you for entering our competition to win a new TV. You’ve won, congratulations! Please click ‘Claim TV’ to get your TV. We hope you enjoy it!”

Clicking on the button directs users to a webpage where they’re encouraged to enter their name, address, phone number and bank account details.

Unfortunately, you’re unlikely to see any Samsung Smart TV turn up at your door. You’re more likely to see some fraudulent activity appear on your next bank account statement.

If you believe you have been impacted by this threat, contact your bank. It might be possible to cancel any fraudulent transactions – or better yet – change your security credentials before the hackers have a chance to break-in.

It’s important to always use a unique password for each online account. Create a unique password for each account that uses a combination of words, numbers, symbols, and both upper- and lower-case letters. And remember that some of the most secure – not to mention the easiest to remember – passwords are actually passphrase. Just to use a phrase or sentence, like the opening sentence to your favourite novel, a poem, or the opening line to a hilarious joke.

Andy Heather, Vice President of password security firm Centrify, told Express.co.uk: “The Covid-19 outbreak has triggered a sharp rise in homeworking and created an environment ripe for opportunistic hackers seeking to steal usernames, passwords and data from weary workers during lockdown. With millions of people using their work email accounts on both work-issued and personal devices, these kinds of phishing scams pose a huge risk if hackers can successfully parlay these efforts into obtaining confidential company information.

“Without the necessary security systems in place, a single hacker with stolen log-in credentials could wreak havoc by getting inside a corporate network, elevating their privileges, raiding company data, and escaping unnoticed. It’s therefore essential that businesses can verify employee credentials are being used by the valid user, such as by issuing a multi-factor authentication challenge by SMS or biometric scan, to ensure they are who they say they are, at all times.”

In response to this, Brian Higgins, Security Specialist at Comparitech.com added: “This is a bog-standard opportunistic cybercrime. It should ring alarm bells immediately, even if people are feeling socially and financially deprived by the COVID lockdown. Never give your bank details, or any other personal information, to anyone online. Why would they need them if the item is free anyway? Be suspicious and be safe. Nobody gives away free stuff.”

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