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Don’t Get Scammed with Gift Cards

It’s the holiday season, and shoppers are flocking to stores to find the perfect gift for anyone: the gift card. However, these handy little plastic rectangles may not be so perfect after all. This year, they’ve been a key component to a business email compromise scam that has been popular in the past few months.

Why Gift Cards, And Why Businesses
Let’s look at the situation for a moment. You spend most of your time around your team. You’ve more than likely developed some kind of familiarity with them, or at the very least have been roped into an office gift exchange. If you aren’t familiar with all of your coworkers or employees, you may have a rough time selecting the right gift for them.

In light of this, it starts to make sense to gift them something that they can pick out for themselves, as gift cards enable you to do. This probably explains why gift cards are such a popular option for so many.

Unfortunately, this also practically hands scammers the opportunity to make a lot of money.

The Scam in Action
Using spoofed emails and social engineering tactics to their advantage, a hacker can scam a company’s users by posing as an authority figure, like the president or the CEO. Under this guise, the scammer can instruct the user to purchase gift cards for the staff and to pass along the redemption codes to the scammer.

Since these instructions “come from above,” the employee complies, not realizing that they are sending company funds to a cybercriminal in an effectively untraceable form of currency.

How to Avoid This Scam
Awareness is key to protecting your business’ interests, resources, and funds–and this awareness needs to be on all levels of your organization. Each and every member needs to be educated on how to spot these scams, and how to confirm them.

This confirmation is another crucial component to your business security. If your employees don’t develop the habit of confirming requests like this through a secondary line of communication, the company is left vulnerable to this scam and similar ones. Sure, fielding confirmation requests from your employees may get old, and fast, but it will almost certainly be preferable when compared to being scammed.

When all is said and done, scammers are going to keep trying to take advantage of you, your employees, and your business at large. Palindrome Consulting can help to protect you. Give us a call at 305-944-7300 today.

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Elizabeth Mitrani
Elizabeth Mitrani
17:23 06 Aug 19
Palindrome Consulting was key in establishing my business and helps me keep it running. They are the consummate... professionals, incredibly knowledgeable and are always available to help. They have gone above and beyond to ensure that I was up and running quickly and that any issues that may arise on my end or dealt with immediately. I highly recommend Palindrome Consulting.read more
Moshe Rubinstein
Moshe Rubinstein
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They are there every step of the way. Responsive and timely. The full service mentality mixed with the problem solving... abilities, is what makes them an easy choice.read more
Benjamin Wainberg
Benjamin Wainberg
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Palindrome Consulting is customer centric. For Palindrome Data Safety is paramount; they keep their and our systems... updated with the newest technologies and are not shy at changing to better alternatives. Their platforms are always running and in the odd case there is an event, their technical team has an awesome response time.read more
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We have been using Palindrome since 2005. They make my company feel like we are #1 all the time. Expert staff are... always available to help all my users all around the country.read more
Martin Feldman
Martin Feldman
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As a partner in Fischer & Feldman, P.A. we have utilized Palindrome Consulting as our IT experts for many years. In... addition to keeping our server up and running, they are available to consult on the everchanging cloud and web landscape. We could not function as a successful law firm without their constant care, attention and almost IMMEDIATE RESPONSE TIME.read more
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Palindrome has been my IT company for more than 15 years. We have been through four server and computer replacements... over the years all of which went smoothly. As technology has changed Palindrome has kept us current in their recommendations and are extremely responsive when we run into a software or hardware problem. We have been through hurricanes with Palindrome and felt confident they would have us up and running as quickly as possible and despite the fact we are probably a smaller client, they have treated us as one of their most important clients. I highly recommend Palindrome and have complete confidence in their capabilities and service. They have even gone the extra mile when we wanted to donate our old computers to a children's special needs school and delivered the computers, set them up and provided service for the same. Ilan Sredni is the consummate professional and has surrounded himself with top professionals and skilled technicians.read more
Nelson T
Nelson T
20:32 25 Jun 19
Palindrome Consulting has proven itself time and time again to be the epitome of professionalism and technical... expertise. They take the time to listen to your needs and then apply their wealth of technical knowledge to create truly innovative and robust solutions. They truly deliver piece of mind.read more
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