Skip to main content

We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again: Don’t reply to — or click on — a link for a random text message you see on your phone saying that you’ve won a prize, gift card or an expensive electronic like an iPad. It’s most likely a scam.

According to a text spam settlement announced by the FTC, two groups of companies known as SubscriberBASE Holdings, Inc., and Threadpoint, LLC, hired spammers to send millions of unsolicited texts to lure people to websites where they would get “free” gift cards. When people clicked on the links, they were led to bogus websites to register for the prizes. Registration required them to sign up for several third-party offers where they had to reveal personal information. At the end, no one actually got the gift cards that were promised. The whole operation was designed to allow these companies to collect people’s personal information and make money by selling it to third-parties.

This scam is avoidable:

  • Delete random texts, especially those that ask you to enter a special code, or to confirm or provide personal information by following a link to a website. These are almost always bogus sites that exist to access your information.
  • Never give your personal or financial information out online. Be guarded with your personal information, and treat it as if it were cash. Refrain from entering your Social Security, bank account, or credit card numbers online or by phone to someone who gets in touch with you. And remember, no legitimate company will ever text or email you asking for your personal information.
  • Report spam texts to your carrier. Copy the original message and forward it to 7726 (SPAM) free of charge, if you are an AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, or Sprint subscriber.

It is your choice whether to submit a comment. If you do, you must create a user name, or we will not post your comment. The Federal Trade Commission Act authorizes this information collection for purposes of managing online comments. Comments and user names are part of the Federal Trade Commission’s (FTC) public records system, and user names also are part of the FTC’s computer user records system. We may routinely use these records as described in the FTC’s Privacy Act system notices. For more information on how the FTC handles information that we collect, please read our privacy policy.

The purpose of this blog and its comments section is to inform readers about Federal Trade Commission activity, and share information to help them avoid, report, and recover from fraud, scams, and bad business practices. Your thoughts, ideas, and concerns are welcome, and we encourage comments. But keep in mind, this is a moderated blog. We review all comments before they are posted, and we won’t post comments that don’t comply with our commenting policy. We expect commenters to treat each other and the blog writers with respect.

  • We won’t post off-topic comments, repeated identical comments, or comments that include sales pitches or promotions.
  • We won’t post comments that include vulgar messages, personal attacks by name, or offensive terms that target specific people or groups.
  • We won’t post threats, defamatory statements, or suggestions or encouragement of illegal activity.
  • We won’t post comments that include personal information, like Social Security numbers, account numbers, home addresses, and email addresses. To file a detailed report about a scam, go to

We don't edit comments to remove objectionable content, so please ensure that your comment contains none of the above. The comments posted on this blog become part of the public domain. To protect your privacy and the privacy of other people, please do not include personal information. Opinions in comments that appear in this blog belong to the individuals who expressed them. They do not belong to or represent views of the Federal Trade Commission.

Edna B
February 18, 2014
What about the Cricket carrier? Does the 7726 apply?
February 18, 2014
Learn all you can about scams to keep you and yours,scam free forever. Catonas
February 18, 2014
Seattle FF
February 18, 2014
To the person receiving 10-15 calls a day: I know it is a bother but, if it were me, I would change my phone number. You will probably never get rid of them because your name and contact information has most likely landed on a 'suckers' list. Selling these lists to other scammers around the world is big business. Also, be aware of the reload scam. You may get a call from someone who says 'We know your contact information is in the hands of scammers but we can get it removed.' All they need--of course--is for you to wire them $500!
December 22, 2017

Received text message saying their 239.00 waiting along with a link Don't click! They're all​ are criminals just like TRUMP Liars scammers out for your hard earned money to take from you. Fixed Applied By TRUMP Grab! Grab!

March 06, 2018

In reply to by Freedom

I got one from Obama. So watch out for the left trying to steal more money from hard working Americans.
March 08, 2018
Received a text this morning from someone claiming to be Sheryl Sandberg chief operating officer of Facebook saying I had won one million dollars in a random computer drawing. I then proceeded to pm her on Facebook and told the texter that I had and was waiting for a response from her there if this was really her she could respond to me there to which they responded they couldn’t so I knew immediately it was a scam. They asked for my address I didn’t give out any info I took screenshots of the texts and blocked them..
Jeremiah teatu
September 03, 2018

In reply to by Bigred333

I have received a text from Trukai That I've won K70,000.00 Cash
August 10, 2021

In reply to by Bigred333

What ? I didn’t win a prize ?? Even after I gave them my SS number and my CC numbers including the secret PIN number??
June 13, 2018
I received text mess stating last month entry women a $1000 Wal-Mart gift card. The redirect didn't go anywhere that a could enter the earning code. I have been going to about everything I could remember entering also have hit that redirect area many times. I hate this, I love on ask and since receiving my ben. I have lost almost 6,000 and due to debt card only can get del from her or state programs. When I reported the diff $ lost on three now different cards issues from said fin. Inst. None of the $ ever recovered tho has M C LOGO ONLY I had to pay $ to them for new cards, to try stop purchess thought the chip cards supposupport a better and safe use it don't hit credit don't need any other info auto directs and pays
July 01, 2018
I received a message on my Instagram messages saying I won $5000, and would receive $500 a week for 10 weeks and all I had to do was give my name address phone number to claim it. I didn't give any info took a screen shot and then got the same message from another person. Screen shot that one too. Now I am registered on these site but on the message the names are spelled different, and that's how I know it's a scam. Contacted both sites and told them.
September 23, 2018
I received a text today 9/23/18 at 10am saying I won a lump sum of $500,000 in a Facebook drawing. They said all I need is a red card from Target to receive half of my winnings. They will take any fees I owe from my winnings. I think this is a scam! I really don't trust this because its too good to be true! They are saying it's not a scam and they don't want any of my hard earned money. I find this hard to believe and I wonder what is the catch. Why are they really contacting me?
October 29, 2018
I received a text message say dear my name and the purchase I made won me a $1000 gift card from Walmart and to receive go to a website from a this number (954)673-6297
November 13, 2018
thanks for the Info. I just send a spam text to 7726. This was very helpful.
November 16, 2020

In reply to by Katt0506

I am receiving about 10 texts a day like this one...Please advise..Thank You n LastAlert: if U Complete that, they will ShipYour ProductsTo U. Kimberly Where should they ShipIt to?a 8b.s3. amazonaws.
January 23, 2019
I'm pretty sure the people they have photos saying "I got my gift card in the mail today! Thanks so much" or some rubbish like that are bots... It takes me to a website saying "just pick the correct box to win" and no matter how many times I click back it just reloads. Bit annoying, really.
February 25, 2019
What about all the pictures and "names" of the ppl that makes a statement at the end stating "yes they won. "....."one click and they got 100$ Wal-Mart card"....and so on. Who are they?
March 20, 2019
My boyfriend keeps getting random texts saying “Hi... Last day to collect your new year b0nus” then a link He’s got these 3 times now 1 off someone called James Another off someone called Peter And another off someone called Libby He doesn’t know anyone with these names and he also doesn’t have them in his contacts.
D Preston
July 09, 2019
Just after that text came on about the tv prize another ad came on asking for my card number foolishly I gave it something do do with tv channels which I believed it was amazon what do I do now
August 21, 2019
I received today 2 text from 557-2 for MONEYNOW aplication and they need click in the link
September 08, 2019
I got a message saying that my number won 407, 927.00 pounds on UK GOLF WORLD AWARDS....fake huh? Just wanna know
February 03, 2021

In reply to by Hriatpuia

At this time I am going to do my breakfast, after having my breakfast coming again to read additional news.
September 10, 2019
I received a text message that referred to me familiar saying "Hi(first name), could you please confirm with our staff Emma if you still want this. You are wasting our time" I was like "wasting your time" excuse me but who the .... so I clicked on the link and it went to a claim your walmart reward spin the wheel page. The wheel had pictures of different prizes on it like a new playstation or a new cell phone. Below it were comments about how they thought it a scam til they received prize in the mail.
November 29, 2019
816-40 texted me with a link. On a Saturday morning and saying if I don't click the link they'll call me tomorrow. On a Sunday. At 4pm. Reported to Scamwatch every single time - they use different number each time
November 29, 2019
816-40 texted me with a link. On a Saturday morning and saying if I don't click the link they'll call me tomorrow. On a Sunday. At 4pm. Reported to Scamwatch every single time - they use different number each time
T Rizzy05
December 24, 2019
I recieved a text from 909-719-6344 saying I won a $1000 Walmart gift card but I don't remember entering anything. It's not uncommon for me to enter stuff. After reading these comments I don't think I'm going to click the link.
Prism Floods
January 01, 2020
I have been getting several messages from different numbers. Each of them had been saying that there are chosen people or people on the internet who have been chosen to win a free iPhone 11. I have blocked all the numbers and I am still getting messages from different points. What do I do?
January 16, 2020
(My name was here)" THIS is YOUR moment to win the BIGGEST JACKPOT of The YEAR Respond: OK to play the wheel of DESTINY..." from #1-775-524-4192 at 1:54pm Jan 12/20 thankfully this one as not late but if anyone know anything else like if it is more then just annoying to help us all out and I am in Canada n is there a spam number u can call for chatter customers. Greatly appreciated ur here.
January 16, 2020
I got notifications saying that I won a $1000 walmart giftcard. This was the first day. A couple days later, I got a notification saying that my current balance was $365,078. Today, I got a message saying, "please dont ignore us, we know that you are. Please claim your money now" Ummmmm.....
January 16, 2020
March 02, 2020
I am glad I don't click on the link. I just gat a text saying I won an iPhone 11. It said so did Jamey so don't click on them. I once had a virus because of that
March 06, 2020
A guy message me on whatsapphis name is jeremiah manson is this real said i won 800,000 is this true
Richie C
April 13, 2020
I got ripped off a lot of money by Holiday Sweepstakes
May 07, 2020
so I just need to know what do you do if you did click the link realized it was a scam and exited and turned off phone then did a factory reset should I still be worried?
Dean bognuda
May 11, 2020
Publisher clearing House has promised me that I won several times I even have a screenshot of it I think they should be reported
August 26, 2020
New spam text out there: - Mobil Survey Tag # TM-3468 Mega Win! you won the $90 mobile carrier giveaway. Pick a gift...and a url is attached. DO NOT CLICK, This is a scam report it to 7726.
January 04, 2021
I received a text from an email (publicr ecordsnotice phrkmupab@ .) claiming that I won $36x.xx and to click on the link. I didn’t click on it, but I am wondering how I got a text from an email number?...
September 18, 2020
I just tried text messaging 7726 because I got a message from Gigi P saying that I won $50,000 and they want me to click on to a link which I did not do but it will not let me text the screenshot to 7726 and I’m with T-Mobile and Sprint can anybody help please
September 18, 2020
I just tried text messaging 7726 because I got a message from Gigi P saying that I won $50,000 and they want me to click on to a link which I did not do but it will not let me text the screenshot to 7726 and I’m with T-Mobile and Sprint can anybody help please
Skeptic Consumer
September 25, 2020
It appears they are no offering Gift Cards from Amazon!
October 25, 2020
I received a text stating that my profile verifies me for a 1k to my PayPal Acct. (Holly w) BinusRewards
November 14, 2020
I got a text from 9064482966 today saying A-lot wire department had 3250 waiting for me lol. Didn't click the link, but replied will list your new scam try to help others, then blocked and deleted the number
January 04, 2021
I recieved at text saying i won money from rothschild foundation they didnt ask for my social security or bank info just my name address and number rtchf@ execs. this is the email i stupidly responded said i won 480.000.00.
January 19, 2021
Amazon sent me a message saying click here it was a survey to win a PlayStation 5 and then they wanted my credit card information is this a scam
Rainbow Sophie
April 01, 2021

In reply to by Jo

Hi there, Jo! When I read your message, I knew this is a scam. Delete it immediately!
Rainbow Sophie
April 01, 2021
My mum keeps getting messages saying, "Hi, you've won an i-phone 12, it's waiting for you!" but once she deletes it there's another one. She's very clever, though!
May 22, 2021
How to get claim my gift
So sick of scammer
July 08, 2021
This lovely person has set up scams on the Baltimore OfferUp every single day. Different unbelievable deals for different unbelievable items at absurdly low prices and all this the same messege…..” Low price for the first person that Text me On This guitar with the screenshot of the post 302**209**0158”. “ They don’t seem to care at OfferUp because sometimes the scammers are sponsored links.
Kathryne Kemmer Jr.
December 02, 2021
Does the 7726 apply to metro pcs?