Amazon gift card scams: it pays to know who your real friends are | Consumer affairs

Sorry to bother you, hopefully you can help at the moment. I need to buy an Amazon gift card as a birthday gift for my nephew today but I can’t do this now as I’m currently away and I tried purchasing online but unfortunately no luck. Can you get it from any store around you? I’ll pay you back as soon as I am back. Your response would be greatly appreciated.

CF, by email

Nice try, CF, but we’re not falling for your attempt to defraud us. This email received by Consumer Champions is just one version of numerous scams doing the rounds involving Amazon gift cards. In one, links are shared on social media offering free Amazon vouchers or coupons. Users are invited to click on links to unlock significant discounts or receive free shopping on Amazon, before being asked for their personal or financial details.

Another is like this one – fraudsters hack into email accounts and submit apparently friendly requests for a favour. Often they claim to be a friend of a friend or even a work colleague. Sometimes they will ask you to buy a gift card online and forward it. We gather that local trading standards have been inundated with complaints from people who have been duped.

Amazon tells consumers to never answer an unsolicited email or phone offer they feel is too good to be true. And if you do fall victim, if you are an Amazon account holder contact its customer service or Action Fraud on 0300 123 2040.

And finally …

Reader AE of London SE1 told us of his experience after a carpenter let him down badly just before lockdown. “I approached the shelving company Vitsoe about installing their modular system into the hallway in my flat.

“For them it was a teeny job, but they patiently guided me through the measurements and so on. After I’d paid we agreed the installation date – not much waiting at all – but I decided not to be there because of social distancing.

“To my delight they sent me a photo on my phone showing the result. When I returned I was surprised to find they had also removed ancient painted-in screws in the wall, tightened up the coat hooks hanging off the back of the door and even reattached the doorstop. They obviously felt sorry for me! Everything was spotlessly clean. Excellent service beyond the call of duty.”

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