Shop for free at ASDA? Free ASDA Gift Card Facebook scam spreads rapidly

Filed Under: Facebook, Social networks, Spam

Hot on the heels of similar scams involving Pizza Hut, and free coffee at Tim Hortons and Starbucks, messages are spreading rapidly between Facebook users about alleged ASDA Gift Vouchers, offering free shopping to "celebrate" the British supermarket chain's "birthday".

Here's a typical message:

Shop for free at ASDA Facebook scam

Shop For FREE at ASDA - FREE ASDA Gift Card
[LINK]
To celebrate our birthday, we are giving away thousands of Gift Vouchers FREE - [LINK]

Unfortunately, many people take a message shared with them by their Facebook friends at face value and don't think twice about clicking on the link.

If you made the mistake of clicking on the link, this is the next webpage that you will see.

Shop for free at ASDA Facebook scam

Your alarm bells should already be ringing! The webpage is very similar-looking to other "gift voucher" schemes we have seen in the past - and, as is quite normal, insists that you share the link with your Facebook friends (thus generating them more traffic) before you can be in with a chance to win the alleged prize.

If you do do what the page says, you're helping the scammers who first kicked off this Facebook campaign. You're not only helping the message to spread further but you're also helping the scammers earn hard cash. They make money the more people they manage to send to an "offers" site, as it generates them affiliate commission.

Offers webpage

If you read the small print on the offers page it becomes clear that the so-called offer of ASDA vouchers have nothing to do with the supermarket at all, and is not officially endorsed. Furthermore, the small print reveals that they plan to share the personal information you share with them with other direct marketers who may use it to email you and send you junk mail in the post.

If there *was* a genuine birthday offer being promoted by ASDA, don't you think ASDA would have mentioned it on their own website?

Unfortunately, at the time of writing, Facebook's internal security systems are not blocking the posts or stopping users from clicking on the links, meaning the messages are spreading very rapidly.

Stop making it child's play for scammers and spammers to pollute Facebook with their money-making campaigns. You should always thinks twice about sharing links on Facebook - after all, you may be doing the bad guys' dirty work for them.

If you were fooled into participating in this scam remove the message from your newsfeed, so you are no longer spreading it with your online chums.

Make sure that you keep informed about the latest scams spreading fast across Facebook and other internet attacks. Join the Sophos page on Facebook, where over 140,000 people regularly share information on threats and discuss the latest security news.

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24 Responses to Shop for free at ASDA? Free ASDA Gift Card Facebook scam spreads rapidly

  1. dan · 1106 days ago

    hmmm i got caught out with this one how stupid do i feel , i dont normally fall for these things as well

  2. Ezzy · 1106 days ago

    I just noticed one of these on my fb home page - my mum always taught me you never get anything for nothing in this world ! I dont blame my friend for clicking on the link though - times are hard so who wouldnt like the hope of a little something for nothing nowadays :)

  3. Stoopid · 1106 days ago

    Me too...I clicked on it as a friend who woldnt normally click on dodgy links did...me bad...and I also feel stupid :/

  4. Dionne · 1106 days ago

    i too fell for this and i work for Asda think i win on the stupid scale :o/

    • Robert · 1106 days ago

      I want to give u more thumbs ups, but only get one ha ha ha

  5. laurat · 1106 days ago

    So its not a virus, I dont have to worry about that?

    • Angie · 1106 days ago

      no, its not a virus, but once you go to the link, you fill in your details and your email and all your own personal details get shared.. and the person who is making the scam gets paid for every person that goes to the link.. Basically, they are being paid for getting peoples information so they can be then sent junk mail..

      • pam · 1090 days ago

        And boy do they send junk, I had to change my e-mail address because it was so bad. I now have a proper bt account and my old talk talk account for rubbish and a hotmai account soley for face book, sorted :)

  6. mick · 1106 days ago

    I never click on anything that asks me to click the like button. And as Ezzy has pointed out you get nothing free in this world.

  7. Emma F · 1106 days ago

    I have Trend Antivirus on my laptop and it went bonkers when i tried to click the link, suddenly relieved i have a decent antivirus on my pc!

  8. Graham F · 1106 days ago

    There are some Argos '£500 gift voucher' ones floating around now too.

  9. rich · 1106 days ago

    just seen a load of these on facebook so thought I' do a quick google to check it out, good job I dud!

  10. Becky · 1106 days ago

    Im such a plank!!

  11. Sarah · 1106 days ago

    OMG, How Dumb Are People These Days, Like ASDA Are Going To Give £100 To Everyone Who Clicks On It, Do You Not Think How Many People Are Signed Up To Facebook. It's Always The Same. You Can Now Have The Chance To Win Tesco's Vouchers, And A Few Weeks Ago 75,000 iPhone 5's Were Being Given Away!!! Come On people Wake Up An Stop Being STUPID!!!

  12. Sharon · 1105 days ago

    There are also ones for Tesco and Gucci doing the rounds now !

  13. Steve · 1105 days ago

    The scam is clever and should be used as an example of how to market to people ethically with real deals or real discounts. If I see something and it sounds too good to be true then I don't click and assume it is a scam.

  14. WippyM · 1105 days ago

    Hang on...if people know that they're using Facebook, how the bloody heck can they fall for these shenanigans?! >=|

  15. Rodders · 1105 days ago

    They rely on greed more than anything. I always check on such offers at the retailers website or think why would they do it through sharecash? The iPhone 5 one was a great example on relying on people's greed for all things free and shiny, offering a device that doesnt exist a day after apple release the 4s.

  16. Robert Gracie · 1104 days ago

    Its a clever scam but its flawed because Asda wouldnt do such a thing thats how I can tell this is a scam almost immediately its a joke how many of these scams are out there on facebook its beyond a funny joke now

  17. Andrew · 1102 days ago

    I fell for it like a right muppet!! just didn't think, locked out of my facebook now, says my email isn't registered :(

  18. watch out · 1101 days ago

    These classic bait schemes have been around for centuries! Ever see the carrot on a string dangling in front of a horse? These tricksters use the same tried & true methodology. The internet just easily expands their reach. I am not extolling their behavoir nor am I bashing yours. we are human, we listen to trusted friends & collegues. if i were to say X works better than Y what logical reason would you have to doubt my assertion?

  19. val · 1097 days ago

    I wont be sharing any more links. Its true how can people like Asda, Tesco and Argos give out thousands of pounds of gift cards? Youv'e heard the saying: If it sounds too good to be true-it probably is. Beware.

  20. chaptronix · 1081 days ago

    they also dont make it clear that in giving you the 5 pound that it is conditional upon you spending another 40 pound in their store

  21. kerry · 1105 days ago

    this is what is under the writing thats saying FREE 500 HUNDERED ARGOS GIFT CARDS FOR CHRISTMAS

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About the author

Graham Cluley runs his own award-winning computer security blog, and is a veteran of the anti-virus industry having worked for a number of security companies since the early 1990s. Now an independent security analyst, he regularly makes media appearances and gives computer security presentations. Send Graham an email, subscribe to his updates on Facebook, follow him on Twitter and App.net, and circle him on Google Plus for regular updates.