At first, the proposition of receiving a complementary basket of Easter candies from the Cadbury company seems to fulfill the age-old adage that many of the best things in life (like chocolate!) can be free. But the recent victims of an increasingly popular mass-text phishing scam can tell you from experience that everything has a cost.
Last week, the official Cadbury Twitter account shared that they had received numerous reports of unofficial social media messages offering free chocolate Easter baskets to thousands of people online, stating that, "We can confirm this hasn't been generated by us & we urge consumers not to interact."
Users on Twitter shared images of the messages they had received on Whatsapp and Facebook, that offered an invitation to "Join the Cadbury egg hunt" and win prizes.
This Cadbury scam seems to be spreading like wildfire on WhatsApp! The giveaway is the .ru on the web address..Russian url. Don't click!! pic.twitter.com/ljCqSsrlye
— Rory McEvoy (@rorymcevoy) March 31, 2022
The actual link itself led victims to a page that asked for personal information like email addresses and log ins. In the days since the scam became widely publicized, many have theorized that the link could be connected to a Russian data harvesting operation. The URL contained '.ru', which is the domain used for URLs from the country.
As reported in The Takeout and The Daily Mail, this type of scam is nothing new, and has notably increased in the past few years. Experts advise to avoid clicking any links or messages that are from unknown numbers, or seem out of character from a friend who may have gotten hacked. Sounds like those who want a deal on Easter candy will have to wait till the clear-out sales on Monday just like everybody else.
This is another wrinkle in Cadbury's public image leading up to Easter. As Salon's Kelly McClure reported, "Cadbury Exposed," a newly-released documentary series led by Antony Barnett takes a close look at the labor practices of the popular chocolate brand, particularly in relation to children.
Some of our favorite Salon recipes:
- The best Sunday night comfort meal is rotisserie chicken chili, especially with a pinch of cinnamon
- Cacio e pepe pie is an insanely easy pasta dinner to make on nights when you don't feel like cooking
- A chocolate sandwich tastes exactly as comforting as it sounds — and it's sublime
- The viral feta pasta dish everyone's raving about is even better without pasta