The Fraud & Scams included below are not from World Market and are listed for the purpose of helping our customers protect themselves from cyber threats and fraudsters. This is not an exhaustive list of potential scams and fraudulent activities. The fraudulent activities and scams listed below are provided for informational purposes only and World Market makes no representation, warranty, or covenant that the information is accurate, complete, or current.
- World Market Gift Cards can only be used at World Market stores or on Worldmarket.com. No legitimate government entity, including the IRS, Treasury Department, FBI, or local police department, will accept any form of gift cards as payment.
- Do not search your gift card balance using search engines. Only check your balance at Gift Card – Gift Card Balance | World Market.
- Other businesses or government entities do not accept payments in the form of World Market Gift Cards. For example, you will never be asked to pay your utility bills, bail money, debt collection or hospital bills with World Market Gift Cards.
- Do not purchase, sell, or check your balance on online marketplaces other than Worldmarket.com.
- If you get a call from a stranger who says that a loved one is in trouble and they ask you to provide gift card numbers to help them, hang up and contact your loved one directly.
- Do not purchase a gift card if it appears that the packaging has been altered or manipulated. If you have questions about a gift card, ask someone who works at that store.
- Do not click on or respond to online ads or websites offering free gift cards. These are often scams.
Common Fraud Tactics Phishing
When a fraudster uses the World Market brand to trick people to visit a fraudulent website that looks like World Market’s website, the victim may be enticed to share sensitive information that the fraudster uses for crime.
- Phishing comes in many forms and sometimes looks like legitimate communication from a retailer. The intention of phishing is to get personal information from the victim, such as login credentials, identifying information, and/or financial information.
- To protect yourself from phishing, remember to be extra cautious when reviewing emails. To identify phishing emails, it’s important to validate that the sender’s email address matches an email address you are expecting to receive an email from before clicking any links. If you have any doubt, do not click any links, and visit the site directly.
Vishing / Social Engineering Vis Calls
When a fraudster uses the World Market brand to lure a victim into revealing personal information over the phone.
- Fraudsters will often mask their phone number to appear as if they are calling from a legitimate company. Do not always trust your caller ID. Scammers can manipulate a caller ID to look like a legitimate company or government agency.
- To protect yourself from vishing, remember to be extra cautious when receiving unexpected phone calls, especially ones claiming that you have won something, have an outstanding fine that you are unaware of, or the caller is claiming they are there to help you recover lost funds. If you receive one of these calls, hang up the phone and contact the reporting party directly.
When a fraudster uses the World Market brand to lure a victim into revealing personal information via text message.
- Fraudsters will often offer a service or request a survey with the intention of getting personal information from the victim, such as log in credentials, identifying information, and/or financial information.
- To protect yourself from smishing, remember to be extra cautious when receiving unexpected text messages with a link. If you receive one of these text messages, contact the reporting party directly to confirm its validity.
Internal Revenue Service (IRS) / Government Scam
In this scam, the scammer will call and claim that they are the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), Social Security Administration (SSA) or another government agency and that the victim owes that agency money. Sometimes, the scammer says that the victim will lose their house or will be arrested if they don’t pay immediately. The scammer then instructs the victim to purchase gift cards and give them the gift card numbers over the phone.
- If you owe federal taxes, or think you might owe taxes, hang up and call the IRS at 1-800-829-1040. IRS workers can help you with your payment questions.
- If you don’t owe taxes, call, and report the incident to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration at 1-800-366-4484.
- You can also file a complaint with the Federal Trade Commission at FTC.gov. Add “IRS Telephone Scam” to the comments in your complaint.
Computer Takeover Scam
In this scam, the scammer will pose as a representative from a bank or retail store that needs to access your computer or email to initiate a refund for overpayment by the customer. The victim provides access to their computer, bank account or online retail account and the scammer subsequently steals gift cards and/or financial data from the victim.
Co-Worker / Boss Scam
In this scam, the scammer will send a text message masking the caller ID to appear as a co-worker or your boss and request gift cards for work or personal need. The scammer then instructs the victim to purchase gift cards and give them the gift card numbers via text message.
The Grandparent Scam
In this scam, the scammer will pose as a relative or friend, calling a victim and indicating that a loved one is in some sort of trouble (e.g., kidnapped, arrested, etc.). Sometimes, the scammer pretends to be a lawyer or the loved one themselves or in a position that can help and asks directly for money. The scammer then instructs the victim to purchase gift cards and give the gift card numbers to the scammer over the phone.
Person In Need
In this scam, the scammer will pose as a relative or friend, calling or sending messages to a victim to urge them to wire money or load prepaid cards immediately. The scammer may claim that they need cash to help with an emergency (i.e., getting out of jail, paying a hospital bill, or needing to leave a foreign country).
Tech Support Scam
In this scam, the scammer will often pretend to be associated with Microsoft, Apple, or a familiar cybersecurity company such as Norton or McAfee and claim that your computer is infected and that they can help. Sometimes the scammer will ask for remote access to your computer and will pretend to run tools on your computer that “discover problems.” The scammer then pressures the victim to pay them, often through the purchasing of gift cards. Sometimes this scam will be in the form of pop-ups or online ads that look like alerts on the screen.
Unexpected Order Email or Letter
In this scam, the scammer sends a fake order confirmation email or letter from World Market to a victim for an order they did not place themselves. The scammer often requests action by the recipient to either call or go to an email page to share personal information or take action such as deposit a ‘fake check’ or purchase something in exchange for a future payment. The scammer may also use this tactic to attempt to get personal information from the victim.
In this scam, the scammer sends a check and letter to a victim and informs them that they can make money as a “mystery shopper” for a retail store. The scammer tries to get the victim to deposit the fake check, create a cashier’s check and buy items at the store. The fake check bounces after the victim has sent gift cards and merchandise to the scammer. The scammer may also use this tactic to attempt to get personal information from the victim. World Market is not affiliated with any mystery-shopping firms or individuals.
In this scam, the scammer attempts to trick a victim into taking multiple surveys and pay for shipping in exchange for a “free” gift. For example, a high-quality piece of jewelry, a store branded gift card, or another product. After fulfilling the requirements laid out by the scammer, the victim may never receive the promised gift, or they may be charged more than just shipping. The scammer may also use this tactic to attempt to get personal information from the victim.
Fake World Market Apps
Currently World Market does not have any officially supported Apps. Fake Apps are created by cybercriminals and contain malicious code designed to steal your data. Fraudsters use the World Market brand to trick people into downloading fake Apps by structuring the look and feel to mimic a legitimate App. When you install a third-party app, the App requests permission to access your data. Fake Apps exploit this to gain access to your personal information, often without your knowledge.
Before downloading an App there are a few things you can check to help determine if it is a legitimate app:
- Check the reviews as often they will indicate if an App is questionable or known to be fraudulent.
- Check the release date of the App and if it is being updated regularly.
- Pay attention to permissions they are asking for.
Reporting Suspicious Behavior
Internal Revenue Service (IRS)
- Report IRS impersonation scams to the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration: https://www.treasury.gov/tigta/contact_report_scam.shtml or call 1-800-366-4484.
- If you think you might owe taxes, call the IRS directly at 1-800-829-1040.
Federal Trade Commission (FTC)
- Contact the FTC, which handles complaints about deceptive or unfair business practices. To file a complaint, visit https://ftccomplaintassistant.gov/, call 1-877-FTC-HELP, or write to: Federal Trade Commission, CRC-240, Washington, D.C. 20580.
- This is not an exhaustive list of possible scams and fraud tactics. For updates on other types of potential scams, check out the FTC’s “scam alert” website at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/scam-alerts.
- For more information on imposter scams, check out the FTC’s imposter scams website at https://www.consumer.ftc.gov/features/feature-0037-imposter-scams.