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Experts warn people of QR code scams

Published: Jun. 23, 2022 at 6:44 PM EDT|Updated: 23 hours ago
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - You may have received a motor vehicle service notification for a vehicle you have never owned. On that mail, you may see a QR code. However, experts say it’s essential not to scan QR codes from unknown sellers.

“QR codes are a new way for scammers to take advantage of people.”

A QR Code is a black and white square-looking icon that directs users to websites.

Cybercriminals use altered Quick Response or QR codes to steal unsuspecting customers’ personal and financial information. In addition, scammers have incorporated QR codes into their phishing attacks, a practice known as “quishing.”

“Quishing is when someone pretends to be a certain agency or government agency or maybe even someone you know when they send you a link that you think you could trust and when you visit that QR code it scans and you think you’re going to a website they want you to visit this may be legitimate but once you scan that website like a QR code it takes you just somewhere that you don’t realize where you’re going.”

Experts say a small percentage of scams involving QR codes have been reported to the Better Business Bureau, especially in the past year.

“One thing that you can do is lookout for strange typing, especially big-time typos if it’s a government agency it would be very strange to see you know weird wording or strange typos or you know if it’s a government e-mail a lot of times it will end in a dot GOV the e-mail should make sense.”

So what are extra precautions you can take to spot a QR con?

“When it comes to QR codes, there are a lot of scanner apps that are out there now QR scanner apps that have a lot of security levels that will tell you about a link before you actually do scan and visit that link so I do recommend it to you, but I do visit a lot of QR codes, and you’re usually using QR codes download one of those safe and secure apps and then will tell you a lot of information on that link before you visit it.”

To avoid any trouble, experts urge people to use caution by checking the URL of the code when entering financial and other personal information.

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