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Do not trust the $500 Amazon Gift Card! scam

Also Known As: $500 Amazon Gift Card! pop-up
Damage level: Medium

What is $500 Amazon Gift Card! scam?

Scammers behind this website attempt to trick visitors into believing that if they will fill out a survey, they will receive the $500 Amazon gift card. Neither this or any other similar page is legitimate, trustworthy. It is common that scammers behind such pages ask to provide personal information, in some cases even passwords, banking details, and other sensitive details.

It is worthwhile to mention that quite often pages like this one get opened by browsers automatically when they have some potentially unwanted application (PUA) installed on them.

$500 Amazon Gift Card! scam

This website is designed to look like the official Amazon website, however, the actual Amazon company has nothing to do with it. It says that visitors were randomly chosen to participate in a survey and for filling out that survey they will receive a $500 Amazon gift card in return.

Quite often such pages ask to provide email address, name, surname, home address, telephone number, etc., or even information like login credentials, credit card details, and so on. Such information could be uses for various malicious purposes, for example, to steal identities, personal accounts, make fraudulent purchases, transactions.

Also, it could be sold to third parties. Either way, it is strongly recommended to ignore such pages. As mentioned in the first paragraph, it is common for untrustworthy pages to be promoted via PUAs. However, apps of this type can be designed to generate advertisements and/or collect various data as well.

Examples of ads that PUAs generate are banners, surveys, pop-up ads, coupons. Examples of details that PUAs collect are IP addresses, entered search queries, geolocations, addresses of visited websites. Although, in some cases PUAs could be designed to gather sensitive, personal details.

Threat Summary:
Name 0 Amazon Gift Card! pop-up
Threat Type Phishing, Scam, Social Engineering, Fraud
Fake Claim Visitors can receive $500 Amazon gift card for participating in a survey
Disguise Amazon website
Related Domain frees-prize[.]vip
Detection Names (frees-prize[.]vip) CRDF (Malicious), CyRadar (Malicious), G-Data (Malware), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)
Serving IP Address 13.58.172.224
Symptoms Fake error messages, fake system warnings, pop-up errors, hoax computer scan.
Distribution methods Compromised websites, rogue online pop-up ads, potentially unwanted applications.
Damage Loss of sensitive private information, monetary loss, identity theft, possible malware infections.
Malware Removal (Windows)

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There are many websites claiming that visitors can receive a certain prize in return for filling out a survey, some examples are "Amazon Loyalty Program", "$1000 Bank of America Gift Card" and "2020 Visitor Feedback Survey". To sum up, most of these pages are disguised as official legitimate pages and designed with a purpose extract certain information from their visitors.

How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?

It is common that users download and/or install unwanted apps when those apps are included in download and/or installation setups of other programs as extra offers and users do not decline them. Usually it can be done via "Custom", "Advanced" and other similar settings, or by unticking certain checkboxes.

This distribution method for PUAs is called "bundling". In some cases PUAs are distributed via ads by designing them to run certain scripts. However, those ads cause unwanted downloads or even installations only after being clicked.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?

It is advised not to use Peer-to-Peer networks (like torrent clients, eMule), third part downloaders, installers, unofficial web pages, etc., neither to download or install any software. Software (and files) should be downloaded from official, trustworthy websites, and via direct links.

Download and installation setups that have some settings (e.g., "Custom", "Advanced"), or checkboxes, should be always checked for offers to download and/or install unwanted apps, and those offers should be declined.

Also, it is recommended not to trust ads on suspicious, questionable websites - they could be designed to open various untrustworthy websites or even download, install of some unwanted application. If there are any unwanted extensions, plug-ins, and/or add-ons installed on a browser - they should be removed.

Programs of this kind that are installed on a computer should be uninstalled too. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for Windows to automatically eliminate them.

The appearance of the $500 Amazon Gift Card! scam (GIF):

500 dollars amazon gift card pop-up scam appearance

Text this scam page:

LOYALTY PROGRAM

Congratulations!
Today, 4 January 2021, you have been randomly selected to take this survey. It will only take a minute and you will receive a amazing prize: $500 Amazon Gift Card!


Like every Monday, we offer amazing prizes to 10 users. Today's prize is a $500 Amazon Gift Card! Only 10 lucky users living in United States will be the winners!

This survey is conducted to improve the services provided to our users, and your participation will be 100% rewarded!

Hurry up, the prizes are limited!

Advertisement that promotes this page:

500 dollars amazon gift card pop-up scam promoting advertisement

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Quick menu:

Removal of potentially unwanted applications:

Windows 7 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 7

Click Start (Windows Logo at the bottom left corner of your desktop), choose Control Panel. Locate Programs and click Uninstall a program.

Windows XP users:

Accessing Add or Remove Programs in Windows XP

Click Start, choose Settings and click Control Panel. Locate and click Add or Remove Programs.

Windows 10 and Windows 8 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 8

Right-click in the lower left corner of the screen, in the Quick Access Menu select Control Panel. In the opened window choose Programs and Features.

Mac OSX users:

Uninstall app in OSX (Mac)

Click Finder, in the opened screen select Applications. Drag the app from the Applications folder to the Trash (located in your Dock), then right click the Trash icon and select Empty Trash.

PUAs uninstall via Control Panel

In the uninstall programs window, look for any suspicious/recently-installed applications, select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".

After uninstalling the potentially unwanted application, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.

Remove rogue extensions from Internet browsers:

Video showing how to remove potentially unwanted browser add-ons:

Google Chrome logoRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Removing rogue extensions from Google Chrome step 1

Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "More tools" and click "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and remove them.

Removing rogue extensions from Google Chrome step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the 0 amazon gift card! pop-up, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) and select Settings. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen. Click the Advanced… link.

Google Chrome settings reset step 1

After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset (Restore settings to their original defaults) button.

Google Chrome settings reset step 2

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Google Chrome settings reset step 3

Mozilla Firefox logoRemove malicious plugins from Mozilla Firefox:

Removing rogue extensions from Mozilla Firefox step 1

Click the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions", in the opened window remove all recently-installed suspicious browser plug-ins.

Removing rogue extensions from Mozilla Firefox step 2

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with $500 amazon gift card! pop-up removal can reset their Mozilla Firefox settings.

Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window, click the Firefox menu, firefox menu icon in the opened menu, click Help.

Accessing settings (Reset Firefox to default settings step 1)

Select Troubleshooting Information.

Accessing Troubleshooting Information (Reset Firefox to default settings step 2)

In the opened window, click the Refresh Firefox button.

Clicking on Refresh Firefox button (Reset Firefox to default settings step 3)

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Refresh Firefox button.

Confirm your want to reset Firefox settings to default (Reset Firefox to default settings step 4)

safari browser logoRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

removing adware from safari step 1 - accessing preferences

Make sure your Safari browser is active, click Safari menu, and select Preferences....

removing adware from safari step 2 - removing extensions

In the opened window click Extensions, locate any recently installed suspicious extension, select it and click Uninstall.

Optional method:

Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...

resetting safari step 1

In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.

resetting safari step 2

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) logoRemove malicious extensions from Microsoft Edge:

Removing adware from Microsoft Edge step 1

Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the upper-right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and click "Remove" below their names.

Removing adware from Microsoft Edge step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the 0 amazon gift card! pop-up, reset your Microsoft Edge browser settings. Click the Edge menu icon Microsoft Edge (chromium) menu icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge) and select Settings.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 1

In the opened settings menu select Reset settings.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 2

Select Restore settings to their default values. In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Microsoft Edge settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Microsoft Edge (Chromium) reset step 3

  • If this did not help, follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset the Microsoft Edge browser.

Internet Explorer logoRemove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:

Removing rogue extensions from Internet Explorer step 1

Click the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". Look for any recently-installed suspicious browser extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".

Removing rogue extensions from Internet Explorer step 2

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the $500 amazon gift card! pop-up, reset your Internet Explorer settings to default.

Windows XP users: Click Start, click Run, in the opened window type inetcpl.cpl In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows XP

Windows Vista and Windows 7 users: Click the Windows logo, in the start search box type inetcpl.cpl and click enter. In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 7

Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.

Reseting Internet Explorer settings to default in Windows 8 - accessing

In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - Internet options advanced tab

Click the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - click the Reset button in the Internet options advanced tab

Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - confirm settings reset to default by clicking the reset button

Summary:

declining installation of adware while downloading free software sampleCommonly, adware or potentially unwanted applications infiltrate Internet browsers through free software downloads. Note that the safest source for downloading free software is via developers' websites only. To avoid installation of adware, be very attentive when downloading and installing free software. When installing previously-downloaded free programs, choose the custom or advanced installation options – this step will reveal any potentially unwanted applications listed for installation together with your chosen free program.

Removal assistance:
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove $500 amazon gift card! pop-up from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

PCrisk security portal is brought by a company RCS LT. Joined forces of security researchers help educate computer users about the latest online security threats. More information about the company RCS LT.

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Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

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