Order a Free Pizza From 'Pizza Hut' and Get Malware Instead

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You might want to dial back the excitement if you get an email offering a free Pizza Hut pizza. The Federal Trade Commission issued a warning this week about a scam dressed up as a free pizza offer.

Consumers around the country are getting peppered with what appear seems to be a plausible offer for free pizza from the Yum Brands chain (YUM). The emails use the Pizza Hut colors and say:

Today we are celebrating out 55th anniversary and we want you to share this celebration with us -- you may get a free pizza in any of our restaurants.

Below that is a button that says "Get Free Pizza Coupon." Click on that button, and you'll end up downloading malware.

Pizza Hut did have an offer available to celebrate its 55th anniversary. But that was well over a year ago, and the deal was a pizza for $5.55.

Watch Out

The FTC warns about how easy it is for con artists to send emails that appear to be from real companies. Here are the agency's tips to spot a fake:
  • Respect your spam filter if it has already identified the email as junk.
  • The sender's email address isn't a Pizza Hut email address.
  • When you hover over the coupon link, it doesn't show pizzahut.com.
  • If you type in the company's official site, you won't see anything about free pizza.
  • Ask yourself if you signed up to get email discounts from this company. If not, it's unlikely they'd send you a real discount out of the blue.
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