Scammers Pretend to Be Companies Like Netflix to Steal Personal Information

Scammers often send texts or emails pretending to be companies like Netflix in order to steal various pieces of personal information.


Nov. 23 2020, Updated 11:31 a.m. ET

netflix text scam
Source: iStock

Although they have raised their subscription price at a fairly regular rate, Netflix's goal is not to steal money from its users. There are scammers out there, though, who pretend to be Netflix in order to do just that. Recently, these scammers have begun reaching out to users claiming that their account information is out of date, and they need to log in in order to update it or their membership will be canceled. 

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What is the Netflix text scam?

The Netflix text scam usually involves untrue claims that users need to renew their memberships. Once they log in, these scammers typically ask for some type of personal information. This can be anything from your Netflix password to credit card information or your bank account number. According to Netflix's website, the company never asks users for any of this information. 

netflix text scam
Source: iStock
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Netflix also states that it won't ever request payment through a third-party vendor or website. The site states that if the URL that you get in a text or via email is unfamiliar, you shouldn't click on it. If you already have, you should refrain from entering any of your information on the site that opens up. As the site points out, scammers cannot get any information from you unless you give it to them. 

What should you do if you receive a suspicious email or text?

You can prevent your own information from being stolen by refusing to fall for scams, but you can also make sure that the scams don't impact other people. Netflix asks that you forward the text or email to, and then delete the message. That way, Netflix's team can track the text and work to determine where it originated from. 

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What should you do if you've already fallen for the scam?

If you've already clicked a suspicious link or offered up personal information about yourself, there are still steps you can take to mitigate the situation. First, you should change your Netflix password, and ensure that the new password is strong and unique to Netflix. You should also update your password on any other sites where you use the same combination of email and password. 

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If you entered any financial information like a credit card number or a bank account number, you should also contact your financial institution to let them know that your information may be compromised. In general, these steps can help you avoid the worst consequences. Netflix encourages users to prevent fraud before it occurs, though, by following the safety procedures outlined above. 

As internet scams continue to become both smarter and more widespread, there are a number of general safety rules that all internet users should abide by. You should never submit personal information through email, and you should always check the URLs in any emails or texts that you receive to make sure that they look the way you expect them to. 

The Netflix text and email scams are just two examples of ways that hackers try to obtain your information. If you're smart, you can make sure that they walk away empty-handed. 

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