Don't buy the latest promise of free Walmart gift bags circulating on social media. It's just another scam.

The latest hoax on Facebook promises a 'gift bag full of goodies' to celebrate the elimination of plastic bags by the end of 2021. It claims Walmart will give away gift bags to everyone who shares and comments on the post by 7PM on March 24.

Credit - Facebook screenshot

Don't hold your breath waiting for your free gift bag to arrive. It's not real. Over 155,000 shared and more than 23,000 commented, buying into the hoax.

Before sharing, commenting or believing anything promising something for free if you'll share, look for the blue check mark beside the company's name. And never click on an unfamiliar link that could attach malware to your computer.

Facebook screenshot

Fake accounts look like the real thing, The key is the missing check mark.

Facebook screenshot

The Better Business Bureau offers several tips protect yourself from social media scams.

  • Do your research. Before making a purchase, do a quick search for the business in question. Do they have valid contact information? Don’t be fooled by professional photography or consumer reviews on their website. These can be lifted from other sites.
  • Search for previous complaints. Do a Google search of the business name followed by “complaints,” “reviews,” or “scam” and see what pops up. If you find other people have been cheated by this business, steer clear.
  • Use good judgment. Many con artists play on consumers’ desire to help those in need. Keep this in mind and use your head, not just your heart, when supporting charitable causes. Go to Give.org to research organizations before giving.

Anytime you see something on social media that sounds too good to be true, more often than not, it usually is.

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