Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
Australian technology news, reviews, and guides to help you
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Scammers target Kogan with prizes you won’t win

You’ve probably seen scams from the likes of Uber or PayPal, but now they’re going after smaller brands local to Australia, such as Kogan.

It can be all too easy to fall for scams these days, and that’s partly because scams can look a whole lot like other forms of legitimate marketing. If you’re used to seeing a newsletter from an online store, scammers may end up appropriating that style to convince you of their own approach, pushing you into a situation where you click without thinking and end up in a bit of an abyss.

Phishing emails rely on this approach and prey on people who click all too easily, because the process is familiar and easy. By building an email or an SMS that looks close enough for it to be real, and marrying it with a website that looks legit even if it isn’t, cybercriminals can make a scam that seems convincing.

There are sure fire ways to stop a scam from working, but not everyone is aware of these, and some emails can be convincing upon first glance.

And this week, we’re seeing another of those, as scammers target local electronics retailer Kogan, which has ventured into other areas, too. The name “Kogan” is typically seen connected with commercial electronics and offers some pretty aggressive marketing, so when a reader saw a scam pop up advertising how they could win a Dyson vacuum simply by answering a question and clicking on a link, it made sense to pass it onto an expert to check it out.

The Kogan scam joins other phishing scams

This new scam is basically just another phishing scam, but it’s one that targets people with Kogan branding. You could probably call it a “Kogan scam” if you want, but it’s yet another phishing scam, no different to the JB HiFi scam, Woolworths scam, or even the Uber scam, all of which promise something over email, ask you to click on a link, and then snag your details likely for the lure of a prize you’ll never receive.

Much like those scams, the dead giveaways for why the Kogan scam is truly a scam can be found in the email address field, the design of the scam, and at the link you shouldn’t actually click.

The email address is clearly fake, and not from an obvious you’d expect an email address to arrive from, which reinforces the idea that you should always check the email address first.

Next is the design, and this is basically one series of images beckoning you to click. Some of the details are sketchy at best, such as how there are two addresses both in the US, one in Florida and the other in Nebraska. Clearly that’s totally convincing for the Australian brand of Kogan.

Finally there’s the link itself, which attempts to pull you down a bit of a hole.

You’ll jump around various links, and eventually find yourself at a website purporting to be Kogan with some fake comments from people have apparently won a vacuum.

After that, you’ll be asked to fill in some dumb questions as part of a survey, and then when those answers are “checked”, find you’re at a place where you can open prize boxes to win.

Everyone eventually “wins”, even though no one actually does win, with the result being a place for you to claim your so-called prize, entering in details for your $1 shipping.

One buck to ship a prize? Sounds too good to be true, right?

It is. The details you enter will likely sign you up for other scams — because it’s more convincing now — but any details you hand for credit card details will just end up allowing the criminal to scam your account.

There’s no prize, nor is there any shipping. This is just yet another scam. And it’s another scam in a long line of scams that continue like this.

After the recent Facebook leak, we expected scams to become both more complex and more common, and while this isn’t an example of either, it is an example of a scam attempting to fleece you in a somewhat convincing way, especially given Kogan does sell appliances.

For now, if you see a scam like this Kogan scam, delete it, because this isn’t real. Any chance that you follow the links here could leave you as another Australian losing money to criminals and yet another statistic for this month’s scam tracking.

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