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Guinness Father’s Day scam continues to circulate via WhatsApp

A Guinness competition that requests personal details via WhatsApp to win a fridge of beer on Father’s Day has been revealed as a scam.

The false promotion which has spread virally across WhatsApp messages, which Guinness owner Diageo has claimed is “not a Guinness competition” has led the company to warn that it  “appears to be a scam” and to proceed with caution.

The message, which tempts people to click on a link that purports to “uncover the hidden prize in Guinness Father’s Day giveaway” has been well-timed with the calendar event to maximise its traction across the network.

WhatsApp users who click on the link are then asked to fill in a quiz and then choose from a number of boxes to find the ‘golden ticket’ before being told they have won and to share the link with 20 friends or five WhatsApp groups in order to claim their prize — a method that is seeing the questionable promotion spread through friendship group chats with alarming speed.

A Diageo spokesperson speaking about the issue to national press this week said: ‘We would advise anyone who has received this message to not open the link and delete it immediately.”

At the end of last year, Guinness was named as the most popular pint in Britain with owner Diageo revealing in its first-half fiscal results that the Irish stout had overtaken Carling for the first time.

The scam, which uses the stout’s popularity along with their desire to treat family members in the lead-up to Father’s Day this weekend, prays on the two core things Brits love: A Guinness and the timelessly compelling idea of free beer. During the cost-of-living crisis as well as a heatwave, the thought of winning such a treat as a fridge filled with free beer has inadvertently led to many people handing over their details without delay.

Meta, the company that owns WhatsApp, advises people who think they have been the victim of a scam to block he incident and let WhatsApp know by reporting them.

As an additional precaution, it suggests users “update your privacy and security settings” and outlines how to “adjust your privacy settings to control who sees your information and enable two-step verification to better secure your account”.

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