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Survey says: It's a scam!

Posted 10 June 2015 12:00 AM by Cindy Earehart Rinker

Like most companies, Shentel gets targeted by scammers. This summer, we have had two fake “survey” scams fool our customers into thinking they were answering a survey we sent out and that they were going to get prizes for doing so.

This specific scam has a header that reads: June Opinion Survey for Shentel Service Company Windows & Firefox Customers. The same scam earlier this year used the name Shenandoah Telecommunications.

It then goes on to ask the reader to answer a few short questions about their experience with Shentel Service Company. Then it reads: Want to know what you get in return? Complete this survey to find out. All offers are worth more than $70!”

That, my friends, is pure scam.

From that point, people discover they have to either enter their credit card number for shipping or have to give up some personal information or they have to pay something for the “free” gifts.

The scammers are crafty. A survey is one way of getting someone to let down their guard. The victim is giving his opinion and maybe is flattered that someone is interested in what they think. Then, after the conversation/survey has proceeded, the scammer will drop the bomb and try to get personal info or get the person to give up his credit card digits.

It is so important to know with whom you are corresponding. There are legitimate market researchers who send out to surveys, but it is your responsibility to be suspicious of everything that comes to your email inbox. One wrong move and you have given away important information or you may have loosed a foul virus on your computer.

Don’t divulge personal information that makes you uncomfortable. A reputable survey will never ask for your Social Security number, money, password or bank account information.

Remember, knowledge is power. Even basic information can be used against you by scammers. By knowing your phone number, email address, birth date and name, a fake surveyor may cause you a whole lot of misery.

Cindy Earehart Rinker, a marketing supervisor at Shentel, caught a computer virus last week and is very embarrassed because she knows better.