More scams! And strong passwords advice

AMAZON BRUSHING – BRUSH UP ON HOW TO PROTECT YOURSELF

Have you received an Amazon parcel recently that you have not requested? Amazon ‘brushing’ scams have surfaced over the last three years and centre around Amazon sellers being able to leave fake positive reviews for their items.

How does it work?

A third party seller will get the name and address of a consumer. They will then purchase an item and send it to the unsuspecting person, claiming on Amazon that it is a ‘gift’. This allows that seller to leave a fake review for that item, even though someone else has received it. As a result, they can improve their Amazon seller rating which will encourage other customers to shop with them. Also, the amount of times a product has been sold will improve its chances of appearing in other customers searches, which is another benefit to the seller.

Should I be worried?

Most people who receive these items are not charged for them. The main concern is how the seller obtained the person’s name and address in the first place. Sometimes this information is readily available on an internet search, other times it might be the result of a data breach.

A good way to check whether your data has been compromised is to use the site www.haveibeenpwned.com. By entering your email address, you can see if/when it was involved in any data breaches and where these occurred. If this is the case, then it is essential that you change your password using the National Cyber Security Centre guidance below.

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Date of notice: 
Wednesday, 8 July 2020