The Better Business Bureau of Eastern North Carolina is warning consumers to be aware of fake QR codes.

Companies use QR codes to point consumers to their apps, track packages, or view menus. But because these codes can’t be read by the human eye, they have become a way for scammers to disguise malicious links.

As QR codes get more popular, BBB Scam Tracker is seeing more reports of con artists using them to mislead consumers.

How the scam works:

You receive an email, a direct message on social media, a text message, a flyer, or a piece of mail that includes a QR code. You are supposed to scan the code with your phone’s camera, and it will open a link.

In some scams, the QR code takes you to a phishing website, where you are prompted to enter your personal information or login credentials for scammers to steal. Other times, con artists use QR codes to automatically launch payment apps or follow a malicious social media account.

These scams differ greatly, but they all have one thing in common. Scammers hope you will scan the code right away, without taking a closer look.

QR codes often appear to come from legitimate sources, so make sure any correspondence is legitimate before you scan the code.

For example, one victim told BBB Scam Tracker that they received a fraudulent letter about student loan consolidation. It contained a QR code that…

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