In June 2018, social media users began sharing links that promised a free Dunkin Donuts dozen box in celebration of the chain’s 68th anniversary, in return for the completion of a short survey:
Some people with virus protection who attempted to complete the survey reported encountering malware warnings shortly after clicking the link:
Dunkin’ DonutsUS , there is a coupon going around on Facebook for FREE dozen donuts, when you click it you are routed to a survey of 3 questions, then you are asked to share it on facebook, then you are asked to message it to 15 people final step you are redirected to another site at which point my WEBROOT SECURITY ALERTED Me DANGER THE PAGE YOU ARE ATTEMPING TO ACCESS HAS MALWARE are you sure you want to continue. I did not continue and warned everyone I sent it to not to enter and request the coupon. Is this a fake offer that you should be warning your followers about?
Moreover, even those users who experienced no malware issues still had to like and share and link to the scam, and disclose personal information, to qualify for their supposedly “free” donuts.
A representative for Dunkin’ Donuts wrote on the company’s official Facebook page that the online “free dozen” coupon is not one offered by the chain:
There are many Facebook coupon scams operating in the same manner, and the problem has been present for years. In 2014, the Better Business Bureau issued guidelines warning specifically of identical scams on Facebook targeting shoppers:
Don’t believe what you see. It’s easy to steal the colors, logos and header of an established organization. Scammers can also make links look like they lead to legitimate websites and emails appear to come from a different sender.
When in doubt, do a quick web search. If the survey is a scam, you may find alerts or complaints from other consumers. The organization’s real website may have further information.
Watch out for a reward that’s too good to be true. If the survey is real, you may be entered in a drawing to win a gift card or receive a small discount off your next purchase. Few businesses can afford to give away $50 gift cards for completing a few questions.