Gaby Miller uses loyalty rewards points to reap benefits including discounts off shops and gift cards. Picture: Toby Zerna
Gaby Miller uses loyalty rewards points to reap benefits including discounts off shops and gift cards. Picture: Toby Zerna

Scam alert: Rewards cards can be a ‘phishing’ trap

"That will be $24, but if you become a club member, you can get a $1 discount and we'll send you our latest offers."

How many times have you had "club membership" sold to you when you are at the till, picking up a few quick items?

Generally, all that is required is for you to provide your name, address, email, possibly your date of birth and your mobile number.

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But given the number of organisations affected by data breaches is only on the increase, should you provide your liquor outlet with those personal identifying details for the sake of saving a few bucks?

And what details are safe to give out anyway?

Scammers really do like that combination of name, address, DOB and mobile number. That's because a scam is so much more plausible when the scammer knows your name.

And when the scammer from the "Australian Tax Office" has your birth date too, many are more likely to believe them, engage and provide remote access.

The scammer won't be able to use the above combination of information alone to create bank accounts in your name, or apply for a credit loan. They require that extra level of certification like a driver licence or Medicare card to do this.

However, they will use it to "phish" these extra credentials from you with those very authentic looking emails that may arrive on your birthday.

The reality is though, most of the information you provide to get your "rewards card" you've provided elsewhere and is already at risk of a breach.

And as long as you remain vigilant when it comes to opening emails, messages or links from sources you don't know, you can enjoy the benefits of getting those two-for-the-price-of-one discounts we love.


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