The BBB has received alerts nationwide of consumers getting text messages claiming that they have won a $1,000 gift card for Walmart or Best Buy. This is a scam that can compromise your personal information. BBB is offering tips to those who receive such a text message. Details here:

Spam texts are not only obnoxious; they are trying to trick you into giving out personal information. BBB has received multiple reports of spam texts stating that you have either 'won' or been 'randomly selected' for a gift card. Both Walmart and Best Buy have placed warnings on their websites confirming that they are not sending out these texts, nor are these gift cards real.

BBB offers tips on dealing with obnoxious phishing texts (aka SMIShing) and what NOT to do:

  • Do NOT reply to the text asking them to stop, even if the text instructs you to do so. This will confirm that your phone number is active.
  • Do NOT click on any links in the text message.
  • Contact you cell phone provider to block the phone number who sent you the text.
  • Report the spam text to GSMA, which recently introduced the Scam Reporting Service
  • Forward the spam text to '7726' or SPAM

Always be wary of any messages (emails, texts, voicemails, etc.) that claim you've won a prize out of the blue. Go with the old saying, "if it sounds too good to be true, it probably is."

If you feel you have compromised your personal information, contact the Federal Trade Commission for help with identity theft. You can also contact the BBB at 509-455-4200 if you have any questions about scams in your area.